THE DINING HALL, 2007
KW Institute for Contemprary Art, Berlin, Germany.
At the center of this multi-space installation was an industrial dishwasher that I reconstructed and transformed after I had bought it from a kibbutz in Israel.
This system of digestion was surrounded by several rooms, each altered by a different mechanism. One room was filled with lamps that were thickly encrusted with glistening salt crystals and hung at or below waist level. Another space was turned into a fully furnished living room in the style of the 1950s, replete with a kitchen. The hotplates of the stove in that kitchen were replaced by speakers, which sounded the voices of four women who could be heard talking about their life experiences. Around the corner from the kitchen I had placed a small, key-cutting stall; the keys it produced were not copies but rather pendants replacing the original and seamlessly interlocking with their ward.
A transition to the large hall leading out of the rooms presented an entirely different scenario: Sculptures of human figures were seen climbing architectural structures and ladders, or laying on the floor. Other figures were positioned standing on their heads inside big tubs and metal buckets. These nude characters, fashioned from papier-mâché, looked like anatomical models. Painted the color of blood, their ribs and muscles were made of twisted cords created with newspapers.
One of the structures these figures were in the midst of resembled a giant döner kebab, in reference to the kebab eateries that can be found on the streets of Berlin. Another structure, a ceiling-high stack of pyramidal shapes, echoed Romanian sculptor Constantin Brancusi's symbol of hope – the Endless Column. In a corner, peeled watermelons were dehydrated on a large metal bed of salt, their consistency turning to that of flesh.