Catalogue > At random

Philippine Hoegen


Vidéo | dv | couleur | 65:0 | Pays-Bas | 2014

Arena is part of an on-going examination into the nature of display, and the ways in which objects and bodies are made to perform, through their display. The material for this work was shot at the Mission Museum of Steyl near Venlo in The Netherlands. The museum holds a collection of animals and artifacts that were collected by missionaries from the Steyl Monastery during their travels all over the world in the 19th and early 20th centuries. The museum was built specially to house the collection and its display has never been changed since it was first installed in the 1930’s and it uniquely reveals and exemplifies the perceptions and views of its time, many of which persist in the present. The animals’ bodies, stuffed and stiffly set in eternal grimaces, growls and howls, are made to perform these perceptions, ideas and ideologies that are projected upon them. The film is made of slow vertical pans that map the entire collection. The camera’s position is close up; skin fur and feathers take equal attention, as do painted backdrops, stones and attributes. As we stand before the projection, larger than life, of these animals, what becomes unclear and what is questioned is: Who is displaying what and for whom? Who is looking at whom?

Philippine Hoegen lives and works in Brussels and Amsterdam. Her work consists of installations and performance. She is currently a participant of apass artistic research program in Brussels and tutor of visual art at AKV St Joost Academy for Visual Art, Breda/Den Bosch, NL. With Carolien Stikker she runs BREW, a space in Brussels, which organises and hosts events in the field of contemporary art. She is founder and board member of Calcite Revolt, a transnational platform of exchange for artists, curators, critics and theoreticians, and with Banu Cennetoglu she conceived, produced and edited Bent, a series of artists’ books from Turkey. Recent projects, presentations and performances include: 2014 Kunstallmend (Transnational Art Commons: collective on-going project), Bern Biennial, Bern CH; Masist Gül by Banu Cennetoglu and Philippine Hoegen, KunstraumLakeside, Klagenfurt AT; 2013 Performative lecture Exterior Monologue followed by a workshop, University of Art and Design, Cluj-Napoca, RO; Exhibition; Exhibition and public discussions Adaptations, with Banu Cennetloglu, The Collective Gallery, Edinburgh SCO. Recent publications include: 2013 ‘Going Underground”, review by P. Hoegen and S. van Stein on the Sarajevo Biennale, Metropolis M online, April 2013, Kunstwordtterugkunst, Cahier for Contemporary Art, (artist’s contribution). 2012 Mutualisms Proximity Edition, magazine for contemporary art and culture, Public Media Institute, Chicago, artist’s contribution P. Hoegen and C. Stikker.