I’m here to make you feel. I’m not here to seduce you.

30. 9. 2011 // // Kategorie Randnotizen 2011

There was a work by Hermann Glettler I was completely fascinated by. I will try to describe it. The room looks unfinished. The floor is covered in overlapping carpets. Each carpet has one or more large perfectly formed holes cut out of it. Each hole is exactly the same size, larger than a man-hole cover, large enough to fall through. Under the holes the floor is covered in cheap plastic. Through the plastic you can half see the wooden floor. One entire wall is covered in a badly hung gray curtain. Another wall has a section removed from it and the section, a rectangle with a curved top, is carelessly propped up somewhere else. In the four corners of the room are small speakers. A Velvet Underground song is playing on repeat.

Every aspect of the installation looks like it was done on purpose and every aspect looks like a complete mistake. It all looks extremely amateur but I feel a strong vision behind every moment and gesture. There was a photo in the program of a small group of people sitting on the overlapping carpets, all watching something out of frame. Maybe the installation was simply the setting for a performance. Unlike most art experiences, I have limited information, which I believe in this case makes it all so much better.

I’m reminded a line I wrote down in the dark the previous night. A sentence from the show Tales of the Bodiless: “I’m here to make you feel. I’m not here to seduce you.” Wandering across the floor of plastic and purposefully destroyed carpets, I definitely feel something. I feel the room is a mistake and I feel moved by it. I also know it is purposeful. I think that someone has managed to make art that doesn’t feel like art and I am surprised how rare this is in the world.

I don’t know who Hermann Glettler is and I was unable to read the German text about him in the catalog. I googled him and in all the images he’s wearing a priest collar. I imagine some mad, artist-priest but that seems extremely unlikely. I am sure someone will read this text and then set me straight, explain the things I don’t know. That there is a reasonable explanation for what I have seen. Below is the only image by Glettler I was able to find on the internet. It is entitled Without.

Hermann Glettler - Without, 2011 - Bedruckter Karton, 100 x 72 cm