The continuously expanding space...  

(Dier Me - middle level)
Installation on 3 levels in an old archival building, The Hague, 1999

A collaboration between Jacqueline Wassen, Gaudi Hoedaya,
Sen McGlinn and Sonja van Kerkhoff.

Dier Me: slide projection
onto papier-mâché animal forms in a niche.

On the other side a slide projector threw words onto suspended papier-mâché animal forms in the niche created by a newspaper wall.

One hung in front of the niche, missing the projection, and functioned like a visual introduction. Another's legs had slipped through the wooden shelf and protruded underneath. Another lay on its side as if in a coma or dead. Another hung in a space by itself at the end by the projection on the wall.

When the wooden knob was pulled, most of the animals moved through the space,
causing changes in the projection.
Here some of the newspaper clippings were articles about the war in Kosovo, market forces, hanging curtains, and a cartoon showing God the father, at a control panel.

   The projected words related to human capacity: "eat", "spirit", "speak", "think", "hope", "dream", "vision".
At times the words were hard to make out.

One text remained clearly visible on the wall at the far end:  

Deus ex machina
(God appears from behind the scenes)

In contrast the animal´s newspaper skins were a chaos of words, overloaded, meaningless.
We were humanizing these animal forms with words, but the words here were as transient as salt in the hand.

In this little ´theatre´, words are everywhere. We know words, meanings, have no absolute universal referent: we project meanings and receive them back enriched.

The title of this piece, Dier me, is a play combining the Dutch word, ´dier´ (animal) and the English, ´me´, so it reads: ´Dear me´ or ´animal myself´.
In a sense this work is a postmodern response to the awareness of postmodernism. It is an expression of faith in the magic of postmodernist multiplicity rather than of disillusion, regret for a lost utopia of certainties.

Homo ludens (Humans are animals that play)

We wanted this theatre of life and death or of meaning and non-meaning to have a playful element. For most visitors the animals that moved in response were fun and the only words that were accessible to them were the newspaper clippings.

I didn't want to explain what this piece was about. I felt that it could only work for someone if they made the effort themselves. The piece was playful enough and for many visitors that was enough in order for them to spend time with the work.
The Dier me installation before we put up the newspaper wall.

Explaining the work would have not worked.

As in the video, viewers must be aware that they are filtering meaning from the sea.
The continuously expanding space...
Installation on the three top floors of an old archival building