Dans le jardin des beaux arts, 2000

(In the garden of fine arts)

Installation view: Left to Right:
Dans le jardin des beaux arts (the snail forms), Stars for feet, (transparency of child's foot) Video compilation, Grains of Salt, Virtue of the Rose (small objects on the back wall), A Tangled Tale (on right wall), Certain Measures (sticks on the table), detail of a work on the right by Sarah Buist.
In the exhibition: Korero korero, Sarjeant Gallery, W(h)anganui,
New Zealand / Aotearoa, 2000.

An installation of
19 snail forms
by Jacqueline Wassen,
Sen McGlinn and
Sonja van Kerkhoff,
in a wing of the
Sarjeant Gallery, Whanganui,
Aotearoa / New Zealand.

I was unsure of the facilities in the gallery half-way across the globe. And then in consultation with Jacqueline and Sen, we decided that it would be an interesting challenge to bring art which was intended to work as part of a process with the public.

Art that seemed to lie around waiting to be brought to life.

At the same time we wanted the work to be fun or easy for a general public to relate to and so we chose the 'common snail' as our mascot. The flat snail silhouttes could be seen to symbols the snail self or the shadow (simula) of snails in all forms and sizes.

Above: On the Left are two works from the adjacent exhibition: "Who Am I? - Art and Belief" and you can see that a few snails have escaped from the wing of our exhibition: "Korero, korero".

The spiralling texts on the black surfaces were also important. Not just to help the audience to engage with the forms but to create a feeling of the poetic, metaphorical or just plain fun.

Installation view: Dans le jardin des beaux artes
On each snail form a text spirals inwards.

overview of the nineteen snail-forms on the floor of the gallery wing

So the walls were intentionally left fairly empty with just a few postcards or small objects hanging here and there.

During the two month exhibition, members of the public drew images or added words as a result of workshops done with Sonja around the snails.

detail showing eleven snail forms with a video by Sonja
Installation view: Dans le jardin des beaux arts
(detail showing 11 snail forms)
Still from the video, Crossing.

We wilden de zwarte slakken in contrast tonen met de witte expositieruimte in het museum voor moderne kunst, zodat ze konden worden begrepen als 'zwarte gaten' of 'negatieve ruimten', alsof er happen zijn genomen uit een in cultuur gebrachte ruimte.....

detail showing three snail forms with a video by Sonja
Installation view: Dans le jardin des beaux arts
(detail showing 3 snail forms)
Still from the video
Wrapping for a Marginal Citizen

Other locations for this work (2000 onwards)

Artwork arranged chronologically    By Sen + Sonja    Sonja's c.v.    Sonja's Design page    A tour via thumbnail images