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Spatial sculpture

Per Kirkeby, documenta 9, 1992

Per Kirkeby's spatial sculpture is connected to the end of Documenta Hall. The artist studied Geology in the 1960s, and then began to paint and to write. In 1966, his first works made of brick appeared. His sculptures must be regarded as moulded sculptures, as they are geometrically reduced in their shape and must always be seen in connection with their environment.

The rigorous, clear construction contrasts with the sweeping curves and arches of Documenta Hall. Per Kirkeby's sculpture is reminiscent of a meander motif. From the outside, the work appears very compact, but if you go through it, the sculpture opens up like a house. The contrast between closed and transparent physical and spatial behaviour is combined in this work.

When you go through, you lose your perception of inside and outside and, in spite of its solidity, it seems transparent and shows simple shapes. The sculpture is supposed to draw attention to an elementary problem of artistic design: the presentation of constructed works of art which are conceived as a spatial sculpture are more reminiscent of buildings with respect to their structure.

The spatial sculpture is 8 m high and was built in cooperation with trainees from the training construction site in Kassel. A series of 3 rooms was created through 6 x angled brickwork made from water struck bricks.