Bram de Jonghe’s solo exhibition ‘Counting away’ at Barriera is the result of a collaboration between Progetto Diogene and P/////AKT (Amsterdam).
His aim is to “aesthetically isolate” the tension between a purely formal and a pragmatic approach towards his own work. According to De Jonghe this tension has a potential for reflection which can be liberated. By experiencing the work, the viewer is not only confronted with its possible meanings and the conventions that support them, but also with how they may change depending on their context.
The idea is to create circumstances through which we can experience the everyday in a new way that is reflexive and detached. The intention of the work is not to actually annul the difference between art and non-art (or between artistic representation and the empirical truth), but rather to interpret it differently. We can no longer objectify this difference as the boundary between a self-contained artwork and what exists outside of it. This manifests itself through the specific reflexive structure of the experience which separates our relationship with art from all the theoretical and practical ways of ‘living in the world’.
An object’s aesthetic quality is not tied to predetermined properties; it is the product of the experience that is initiated by the confrontation with that object. In the context of blurred boundaries, we can no longer interpret the aesthetical as ‘the other’ from the non-aesthetical. At least not without giving up aesthetic thought as such. It is about the shift.
De Jonghe wants to apply these notions by means of the ferro-mentale: metal beams that don’t do anything else than being themselves. The beams will form a rendezvous for sunken fossil-like objects that have been found in the public space of Turin.