Bettina Buck Shuffles through a Museum and Smashes Art-Historical Narratives
Site specificity is never a strategy in Buck’s practice nor is it a form of Institutional critique, but rather a structural or contextual marker. Space Insert / red line (V&A) is a large scale print on fabric that references an institutional setting, in particular the V&A, but rather than the regular face of the museum we are presented with a ‘behind the scenes’ view, or a space in transition. The performative aspect of architecture emerges in this instance in its ‘in-betweenness’. However space is flattened, not only in the content of the work but also through the pixelation of the image and the red stripe (as is the case in Hong Kong) that brings the real into the realm of the object.
Bettina Buck is an adamantly anti-modernist artist who, in her own words, creates work that “simultaneously attracts and alienates the viewer” and “creates a tremor, a vibration and a conversation with its surroundings.” Buck’s sculptures are assemblages and reconfigurations of found industrial materials like carpets, posters, foam, latex, and plastic. She draws upon the objects’ histories, while also creating jolting contrasts of their textures and forms. To heighten the disquieting effect of her work, Buck sometimes displays the work at unconventional heights. Though they appear abstract, these works sometimes have anthropomorphic traits or illustrate narratives. Buck’s sculptures also draw upon classical forms, mythology, and traditions of sculpture.
German, b. 1974