Urs Fischer, you melt my wax heart

My first blog of the new year is in occasion of the Urs Fischer exhibit, Urs Fischer: Marguerite de Ponty, currently at the New Museum and where I spent a delightful afternoon on my birthday. The first time I saw an Urs Fischer installation was at the Whitney Biennial (two or three biennials ago); a deconstructed, or rather demolished gallery wall. I was totally inspired: I too wanted to fight with those white walls and gray floors! And I too wanted to bust out of the claustrophobic gallery space!

Fischer’s installations are personal; the space is transferred from something generic into a habitat that reflects the artist’s skewed version of reality. The middle floor of the three-floor exhibition featured a small hole along one wall and on close inspection, under the influence of a motion sensor, a rough prosthetic tongue is protracted!  But the actual installation is so much more; the entire gallery was covered with trompe l’oeil wallpaper made from photographs of the exact space. In the second image, only the one exit sign and two flourescent lights are actual structures, the rest is wallpaper, in fact even the beams are fake and the wallpaper ceiling is about a foot lower than the real ceiling. A  surrealist’s representation of minimalism!

Down a floor, Fischer assaults the viewr: enter a crowded room with larger-than-life objects represented on mirrored blocks. Watching your own reflection (I do love mirrors) and those of other museum patrons is as big an experience as the objects are exaggerated.


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