Ádám Ulbert: Thalassa II / Fish, Volcano, Twins
October 17 – 21 2018
The Artkartell projectspace with the curator Gábor Rieder is glad to propose a solo presentation for the non-profit spaces section of the Paris International 2018 with the work of Ádám Ulbert entitled Thalassa II / Fish, Volcano, Twins.
In Thalassa II / Fish, Volcano, Twins the Budapest born, Amsterdam based artist, Ádám Ulbert is investigating the effects of prenatal and pre-historical memories. With this, his most recent piece, Ulbert intended to blend natural sciences with mythology using a circular structure between three basic references. In this sort of psycho-morphological exploration he interconnects the symbiotic mating habit of the deep ocean Anglerfish and the theory of the deep-sea volcano created life as primal nature-culture creating force and these effects on having a conjoined twin consciousness as being natural entities. As a starting point Ulbert got inspired by the procreative habit of the self-luminous Anglerfish, in which its unique “parabiotic” reproductive relation the male fish enters the female and is eventually absorbed in her, creating a no longer separable, new, single entity. Both formally and content wise Ulbert wanted to evoke Aristophanes’ theory of love appeared in Plato’s Symposium. In his fable about love and regressive longing towards the complete merging with the other Plato tells the story of the first Siamese Twin like creatures. These spherical androgynous creatures were formed as ones and they were so powerful that the gods feared and envied them. Zeus decided to separate them and in a violent and crippling manner he cut them into half. According to the Greek myth this longing towards that first state of being is in humans primal nature. With his sort of re-telling or re-creating the story Ulbert expanded the range of longing creatures and habits towards the animal and mineral kingdom as well. Using the volcano’s violent eruption that throws the underwater life onto the surface of the earth, divides it through the evolutionary process from its deep-sea origins. The twin is perhaps the container of these two primal life-forming events. The logic of the piece could be the following: merging or initially being merged, a catastrophic event that separates, and having the memory of both the merged and the trauma of separation.
The piece has been previously presented at the Rijksakademie Open ’17 and consist of polyurethane rubber sculptures, oil paintings, neon tube lights and an animation. For the Paris International Ulbert presents the work in a coherent installation focusing on the three main sculptural pieces and four of the oil paintings. The third version of the show will be exhibited at the Artkartell projectspace in 2019.