Four concealed objects, black acrylic on canvas, cord, plywood
79.5 x 79.5 x 6 cm
Photo: Patrick Lafievre
Installation view: Oonagh Young Gallery, Dublin, May 2015
The four objects conceiled under the black canvas were chosen by association in relation to the penultimate chapter of Kafka’s novel The Trial titled “In the Cathedral”.
Josef K., the protagonist of the novel, is assigned the task of acting as guide for an Italian businessman in a rainy day. They agreead to meet in the cathedral at a specific time. The Italian businessman never arrives and so he wanders around the dark cathedral encountering only an old woman and eventually the priest. The priest starts to talk to him making a specific statement that Joseph K. fail to see that a part of this statement is refering to himself specifically, individually. In the distance there is a large triangle of candles flickering on the main altar, K. is not certain whether he had seen them earlier. Perhaps they had only just been lit. When K. happened to turn round he also saw a tall, stout candle attached to a column not far behind him. It was all very pretty, but totally inadequate to illuminate the pictures which were usually left in the darkness of the side altars, and seemed to make the darkness all the deeper. It was discourteous of the Italian not to come but it was also sensible of him, there would have been nothing to see, they would have had to content themselves with seeking out a few pictures with K.’s electric pocket torch and looking at them one small part at a time….
An inspiration for the physicality of this piece might be find in Man Ray’s The Enigma of Isidore Ducasse (1920)