29.8.2018

Flooded Modernity

Since I lived in Le Corbusier’s Swiss student house in Paris in 1999, I have been impressed by his importance to modern architecture.

Especially his Villa Savoye from 1929 has played a major role in my art. The house is perhaps the most iconic construction within architectural modernism because it expresses Le Corbusier’s Five Principles of New Architecture as a living-machine. Like a space ship, the house has landed on earth with the promise of a new time for a new human being freed from history and living in a rationally illuminated world. Villa Savoye manifests modernism’s optimistic belief that we can create a better world through our critical use of reason. It is a ‘ghost’ haunting our collective consciousness.

When, at Floating Art, I let Villa Savoye ‘run aground’ in Vejle Fjord, it is a comment on the state of modernity today. The geopolitical events of recent years – Brexit, the election of Trump, Putin’s interference in democratic elections, the advancement of right-wing radicals in Europe – are happening with a background in and through the new digital media, which challenge modernity’s classic notions of a critical public. A challenge through the formation of fake news, private information bubbles, and in dissolving the economic foundation of the traditional critical news media. The work Flooded Modernity is a critical commentary on the present, an attempt to draw attention to the importance of modernity and how we will deal with the legacy of modernity.

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