Title: One Million Mirrors
Artist: Jesse Farber
in cooperation with the artist Jasmine Justice and her exhibition We Were All Alive at the Same Time at the Kienzle Art Foundation.
Exhibition: 21.05. – 16.07.2016
Location: Eisenacher Strasse 57 10823 Berlin
Our culture produces a profoundly self-alienated subject. The material facts of our existence – our organs, cells, and atoms – seem inscrutable, foreign to us, ceaselessly enacting processes that most of us barely understand. In microscopic photography and diagrams, we recognize the bizarre alien forms of our science fiction fantasies, demonstrating how paradoxically entangled our sense of the mysterious “In There” is with the unknown “Out There” of outer space and the supernatural. Applying an intricate collage process to a variety of art practices, Jesse Farber contemplates our estrangement from our own world by organizing forms that, though legible, describe an indeterminable space, neither inner nor outer.
Jesse Farber completed an MFA with awards from Rutgers University in 2004, and has since attended residencies at Yaddo, the Atlantic Center for the Arts, and the Islip Museum of Art. He has exhibited in New York, Berlin, and Istanbul. As a co-founder of NIMBY Lifestyles, he has also curated international exhibitions of other artists. In 2014, working with visual artist Jörg Simon, he released an album of sound works under the name CEPH. He is currently based in Berlin.
THE PROCESS by Maria Rapoport
You have all the time in the world now—you won’t be disturbed. But find it impossible to focus on structures whose purpose you hardly recognize, as though you’ve never known or been a person to need such things. A curdled, heavy air. Past it, lightless voids like gaps in your own vision—only you know they’re not your faulty eyes but external, real.
All this, inverted in a translucent sphere, bleeding light down the translucent rod supporting it, feeding light into the raw cave floor. In your feet you feel the mindless erosion that formed the cave. In your fingertips, your palm, you feel the sphere’s smooth deliberateness. You ask yourself, slowly, afraid of what comes next, slowly: what is this object for?
And you really don’t know. Don’t even know whether you’ve forgotten or not known in the first place. And there’s no one to ask and might never be again.
Why believe in the past? Why believe you didn’t just become something from nothing exactly now? One reason is: others. They look at you, and see you, and seem to recognize you, seem to expect from you things you’ve done before.
But when there are no others, your faith in past not only vanishes but seems insane. Your memories evaporate like water in the desert. The idea that you could have understood someone or held a model of another person’s consciousness in yours! You begin to question why you ever felt you could—then stop questioning because that too evaporates. Instead, you—
Start new. Travel anywhere you please. This mist might become toxic once it enters your lungs. Your instincts tell you pink is wrong in air. But how can you be sure? Stretched over this crater, this relatively simple chain, identical links inserted one into the other, implies intention. But in this opaque moment, nobody has placed this chain here nobody will remove it.
Past the chain’s long reach you see red and blue galaxies spinning behind a cliff-side high rise of the type that appears and appears and appears on the outskirts of cities. Blinks in and out like the stars. Once you forget, you start remembering things that weren’t. You know, for instance, why that house was built, though it was never built. Why the windows are dark and glassless. You know what kind of nonentities it used never to house.
How you know is what you don’t know. Nonetheless, you realize you once spent days just feeling cold enter the stones digging into your back, cold pass through your skin, which remained warm, into your bones, which shrank. The movement of your blood. The jeweled effects of atmosphere lensing dark gaps between galaxies.
You once had so much time, yet stretched out every second, so that each felt interminable, a Zeno’s paradox of units within units within units of time—until vibrating strings, only vibration.
There is a way, you feel, of stepping from one planet to the next, the difference between one planet and another vanishes when you recognize two planets as only one object then another. In the twisted pipes, in the air whistling through them, you hear the precise movement of the atmosphere, and even information from the farthest star.
You apply your dispassionate awareness, imposing then withdrawing meaning after meaning to test your power.
Alone in consciousness and unopposed, your meanings are truth. You are becoming like God, bringing things into existence. Reimagining what never was. They say there are infinite universes. You’re making one. Somewhere you can’t see, they’re making others.