I presented my ideas on a project about the theme of Lustmord in Germany. This introductory presentation included a short poem and a single photograph as a jumping off point.
One of the quotes that caught my interest in this subject was the following; "The sheer number of canvases from the 1920s with the title Lustmord (Sexual Murder) ought to have been a source of wonder for Weimar’s cultural historians." - from Maria Tatar, Lustmord: Sexual Murder in Weimar Germany. Princeton: Princeton University Press, 1995. xii + 213 pp.
After two weeks of research and individual meetings with Gunnar Green I have developed my concept further and chose to focus on the artist George Grosz. Grosz created a series of drawings and paintings around the theme of Lustmord in the Weimar Republic between 1922-1933.
I created a short video titled Lustmord: A Love Story which uses a combination of photographs of George Grosz, his wife Eva Grosz, images of his paintings and drawings, clips from the film Metropolis and a performance of Falling in Love Again by Marlene Dietrich.
I have the opportunity to work in an abandoned apartment complex located on Marienstraße 2. After viewing this space I decided it was the perfect space to experiment on a larger scale incorporating the theme of Lustmord and the life of George Grosz in the 1920's. I photographed the room and started to spend time there.
Grosz sees the studio as a sort of magical environment where the normal influence of the world is cut off and his imagination is free to explore ideas. I'm using this as a jumping off point to begin my own exploration using a fusion of a fictional space that incorporates aspects of George Grosz studio with a Lustmord scene.
|Photo of abandoned room I chose for my installation, Marienstraße 2, Weimar, Germany, 2012.||Photo of abandoned room I chose for my installation, Marienstraße 2, Weimar, Germany, 2012.|
I spent the last week at Marienstraße 2 painting the room black and preparing the room for the installation. The room is not heated and it is freezing cold at night. As I cover the various layers of paint and sweep out the dirt and trash I get a sense of the past lives and activities that must have taken place here. I've started to focus on particular subtle changes I would like to make to the room.
The room will be closed off to the public and only viewable thru a broken window in the doorway. Inside is a 3D scene which is obviously aestheticized but also referencing several aspects from my research and combining them together - pieces of George Grosz' studio are mixing into my own Lustmord "painting". Furthermore I am adding elements of light and electricity, referencing futurism and science fiction as predicted in films such as Metropolis.
|Brian Bixby, Archeology, Excavation, and What Remains, installation in-progress at Marienstraße 2, 2012.||Brian Bixby, Archeology, Excavation, and What Remains, installation in-progress at Marienstraße 2, 2012.|
My project continues to evolve and change during the installation process. One of my biggest break through moments was when I decided to use a peep-hole as a way to view the installation. I was reading from George Grosz's autobiography and he wrote about looking thru peep-holes at carnivals as a child and how this inspired him to become an artist. I discovered a connection between my research subject, George Grosz, the theme of Lustmord and the medium of the peep-hole as a way to explore these themes in an architectural 3D format.
|Brian Bixby, Archeology, Excavation, and What Remains, installation in-progress at Marienstraße 2, 2012.|
I spent the past 3 weeks working daily on this project and on Sunday night I worked until 6:30am to complete the installation in time for the opening of the 'Adieu Marie' exhibition. Monday evening was the vernissage for the exhibition.
Tuesday, December 18th, 2012 was the day of our mid-term review. I presented my completed installation titled ‘Archeology, Excavation, and What Remains’ to our class and professors. This installation is the first in a series of works titled 'Death and Resurrection'.
|Brian Bixby, Archeology, Excavation, and What Remains, installation view (peep-hole), 2012.||Brian Bixby, Archeology, Excavation, and What Remains, installation view (thru peep-hole), 2012.|
|Brian Bixby, Archeology, Excavation, and What Remains, installation view (visitor looks thru peep-hole), 2012.||Brian Bixby, Archeology, Excavation, and What Remains, installation view (visitor looks thru peep-hole), 2012.|
For my short presentation assignment I spoke about Collage, a brief history and interpretations of this technique over the past 100 years. I mostly focused on works of art that related to my current project and representations of women. I also presented a few variations on the medium including sound collage and video montage as well as assemblage and installation.
I have prepared a single image and 2 page description of my project for review. I have also prepared a selection of photographs of variations on my project using the same props in a variety of configurations.
Short Document - Final Presentation of "Death and Resurrection" projects; Media:death_and_resurrection.pdf
Complete Project Documentation Book; Media:What_Remains_final_documentation_book.pdf
2013 Artist Biography; Media:bixby_2013.pdf