Homage to Odradek

video installation

mixed media (plastic, metal, wood, motor, Arduino, video projection)

200x150cm (projection) / 80x30x20cm (object)

2010

This installation is inspired by Odradek, protagonist of Franz Kafka’s story “Die Sorge des Hausvaters” (The Cares of a Family Man, 1914/17). Described as star-like coil of thread with a handle, this small object (whose function is forgotten), appears and acts as a ‘creature’, a member of narrators family. Constantly disappearing and reappearing in the house (and throughout the story), it endures its special kind of existence.

According to the storyteller, everything that perishes had some previous purpose, some activity and role that had ceased. Having lost its use, Odradek is potentially eternal.

“Homage to Odradek” is a meditation on soulfulness of the inanimate. The object moves around its axis in a series of spasms, whereby the projection – its oversized video portrait, loosely synchronized, provides its light. Due to a slight delay between the two, when the beam of light collides with the plastic surface of the object, a discrete effect occurs, filling the room with myriad of sparks.

“Well, what’s your name?” you ask him. “Odradek,” he says. “And where do you live?” “No fixed abode,” he says and laughs; but it is only the kind of laughter that has no lungs behind it. It sounds rather like the rustling of fallen leaves.

  

Homage to Odradek - Phase 1

Homage to Odradek – Phase A

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Homage to Odradek - Phase B

Homage to Odradek – Phase B

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Homage to Odradek - Detail

Homage to Odradek – Detail

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Homage to Odradek - Installation View

Homage to Odradek – Installation View