DNA

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DNA, 2013

human hair & PVC tubes

 300 x 280 cm

 

Cantonale Berne Jura,

Stadtgalerie Bern,

Switzerland

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

With the installation DNA I take up a theme that preoccupies me for a long time: the impermanence of the human being – but in the same time the relatedness of  humans – among themselves but also with the natural environment and the cosmos, as hairs contain some of the fundamental substances of our universe: carbon, oxygen, nitrogen and hydrogen. I am also fascinated by hairs (and also bones and teeth) because they are quite successful in trying to withstand the impermanence (the hair’s keratin is quite stable) and they carry (at least in their roots) the DNA of the former bearer. They are – one could also say – a treasure of the human genes. Thus each hair represents – at least symbolically – its former bearer.

The fact that in many religions the hairs are considered as seat of the soul or life force demonstrates that one assigned already in early times special attributes to the hairs.

 

The basic forms square, circle and triangle are universal forms that have inspired artists in my own country Tibetan but also elsewhere. Only after I had started my work I came across a painting of Zen master Gibon Sengai (1750 – 1837), originally without a title, that shows the same three basic forms. Later on it got the title ‘universe’.