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David and the Time Machine / Rehabilitation

Parallaxe, Memphis, Linz. April 2015


With Marco Gobbi.

David (front right) and the Time Machine (centre)

Thanks to Jacob Dietrich, Kai Maier-Rothe at Memphis and Holger Jagersberger at Atelierhaus Salzamt

Consisted of two elements:

1) An absurdly grand sculptural gesture that harks back to the clumsy beginnings of Kinetic Art, embarrasingly large and clunkingly aware of its painfully fixed nature here in the early years of the 3rd Millenium. With, on closer inspection, delicate signs of tweaking and growing and, depending upon function and position, a subtle differentiation between elements.

2) A minimal insertion of randomised plant matter that jjjust rolls under the sliding door of ‘Future’ as it hisses shut. Even though he is slow, David proves faster than most of us mortals, even with our biomechanical attachments whirring. PLUS he provides a consistently random rearranging of the sculptural composition on the peripheral x and y coordinates.

Let us consider the titles... So we are clearly talking about healing. And science fiction. And maybe a little bit about mythology. (the Time Machine = Goliath) And reacceptance. And yes, using our looking, we are also in discussion about random household objects, GRAND, fixed gestures – perhaps problematically so. And small random movements in counterpoint.

And the sound? A periodic, rhythmic clunking. Decidely un-tuney, but not without a certain groove - with random elements. Plus, the consistent drone of the plant motors.

Where did it all start?

The context was the exhibition series Parallaxe, hosted by Jacob Dietrich and Kai Maier-Rothe, in Memphis, Linz. Parallaxe places the work of two artists against one another to create new meaning. Marco and Bunn side-stepped this working methodology, choosing instead to work together to create something new. As a way of accomodating the context, they chose to provide two titles and two texts for their combined work.

The content arrived via a different route: After a skype session to talk about possibilities, Gobbi said he would send Bunn some links - a generous offer. When they failed to materialise, Bunn, inspired by this generosity of spirit, made a video that took as it’s starting point the recent work of Gobbi, ‘Copy wth original shadow.’

In the next skype session Bunn declared that he wished to involve a moving pot plant. When Gobbi arrived, with a carefully chosen Azalia under his arm, he declared that he wished to make a Carillon – an automated machine for playing the bells in a church. And so they were off.

Growing that thing wot you can see.

Bunn continues to deal with the loss of two very important David’s, plus in counterpoint, a hatred of artists who use personal tradgedy to flavour their work, plus off to one side a set of strong, Atheistic principles. His technical capabilities ever expanding. Moving plants... What next?

Gobbi continues to employ his painterly training in matters of sculpture to good effect. Plus his love of bargain hunting. Not to mention the broken ‘arm’ of David, who wasn’t the one who needed healing in the first place, but which puts the metaphysical role of the plant into an interesting fluctuation.

The original texts were as follows:

A Rehabilitation.

Behind me there was a huge tree and the wind made dance all its leaves to the rhythm of his music. Suddenly
a thud, a branch had fallen ( to the
ground. The strange thing was that if I looked at the tree behind my left shoulder the branch was still
attached to the plant, but, if I looked at the plant from my right shoulder the branch was on the ground.
At the same time there were two realities and I could decide which one to choose.

David and the Time Machine.


Two years ago there was a science fiction story about the end of the world, and in it, plants were used as a conduit by the machine intelligence, who wanted to live like we do - with a body.

As you know, plants share some of the same DNA as us. So the computer intelligence uses the plant to grow an organic data storage system, which covers the planet. And then the dying, each in their turn, after they take their last breath, are transported into these living leaves, to live on as a complex network of memories, free from their bodies, and to help the machine feel what it is like to have felt things.


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