Performance: December 14 & 15, 2007
Participants: Melati Suryodarmo, Angelica Asp (opera) & David Hovstadius (violin)
Duration: 5 hours
In Perception of Patterns in Timeless Influence, Melati Suryodarmo creates a scene reminiscent of baroque chiaroscuro painting. Among seven white rabbits in a “tableau vivant”, as a living picture, Suryodarmo is locked into a glass vitrine. She remains still, only slightly altering her position now and then as the rabbits leap about around her. A melancholic and humorous image arises in the meeting between the impulsive rabbits and the focused artist. At intervals of 30 minutes the scene is interrupted, an opera singer and a violinist enter the room and perform Bach’s aria Blute Nur from the St Matthew Passion to Suryodarmo. By repeating this pattern, the communication without words and the relation between the three performers deepen during the five hours. Suryodarmo combines theories of philosophy and psychology of perception with mythological thoughts on the animals being allied in magic with the gods and if so, on whether humans are able to communicate with the animals on a higher level of perception. Perception of Patterns in Timeless Influence was reproduced at Haus der Kulturen der Welt during the performing arts festival In Transit in Berlin in June 2009.
Captured by repetitive poetic conquests, Melati Suryodarmo (born in 1969 in Surakarta, Indonesia, lives and works in Braunschweig, Germany) creates powerful images which resemble more of epic challenges than everyday behaviours. She is known for her non-narrative, wordless and very physical performances where she uses the body and its surroundings to create, as she herself puts it: “a concentrated level of intensity”. The repetition in and the duration of her works have the effect that the artist as well as the audience are able to lower their guards and let their thoughts rest. Her art revolves around overcoming obstacles.