White Dreams, Part 5

Freedom! That’s the dictum of neoliberalism, since it started its triumphal procession around the world. The historic sisters of freedom, equality and fraternity, were snatched away from it – collectivity and solidarity became unwanted limitations of competition.

Taken out of its historical context, freedom means not much more than the freedom, to wage wars in its name (if you’re strong enough), to choose you’re insurance (if you can afford it) or to try your luck as one-man-enterprise. With a serious cost-benefit calculation the most creative blacksmith will securely find his fortune … planned individually and not touched by social or political circumstances.

In this new “free” world most of us search for their fortune within a private ideal world, created through consumption. This retreat into the private creates idylls, where the “little” joys of everyday life can be enjoyed. But these idylls are fragile. Neither the reduction to bourgeois tightness and inwardness nor the nostalgic reference to tradition are able to give back the lost security and self-esteem.

Behind the comfortable life hides uneasiness. In the end it won’t be easy to cover the contradiction between ideal and reality. I develop my work along these break lines.

“In a certain way doll’s houses reflect the moral attitudes and the military ambitions of a distinct epoch … only at the surface they are toys, but in a deeper sense they are representatives of their times.” (Jo Elisabeth Gerken)

My installation consists of several “dollhouses”. These showcases – a form of presentation, which arose in the “Biedermeier” – keep the ideal within a frame. To hold up the order – even within this small framework – is only possible with ignorance and self-delusion. The remuneration for this is the utopia, having “accomplished” something.

This idyll palls completely, if all colour is taken away, like freedom without its sisters.

White in white, ideal, clean, aseptically. In the end “free” of colour, variety, life – and “free” of utopia and dreams.