The Cube

Audio-visual installation for a (white) cube, 28.21 min loop, HD, colour, sound, dimensions variable (the work is adjusted and re-worked to the location it is presented in), 2015

by Andrea Božić and Julia Willms

"Something that opens up a new way of thinking or offers a new kind of experience is political. We need new ways of telling stories because the old ways are so contaminated by habits of thinking and being that have got us into the situation we are in now, which is not a good one. Coming from somewhere that is in between and doesn’t quite fit with existing modes of categorisation is as good a starting point as any for trying to think and do things differently. The Cube affords beholders a wonderfully gentle, but deeply affecting way of doing precisely this."
Ramsay Burt

The Cube is an audio-visual installation, an immersive environment for a white cube space where the entire room is part of the work. The installation works with the apparatus of the white cube, re-organising it by overlapping the architectural space with images of the forces of nature at work.

Trailer filmed at Oerol Festival 2018

The Cube fills a wall with a video projection of the gallery space itself, extending and doubling the white cube space through central-perspective projection. A series of very slow cross-fades overlaps spectacular weather conditions, dramatic natural landscapes and animals into this extended space. The relative scales of, for example, a mountain landscape or a snail are modified to fit into the same white cube, making everything either too big or too small relative to the eponymous cube or the viewers: The mountain appears in miniature but the snail is a giant both in relation to the room and the spectator. The extended white cube does not remain unchanged by the forces and animals it contains, but the walls also break open so the visitor finds themselves at the top of a mountain or in an aquarium. The installation brings images into this white cube that problematize human relationship with and interventions into nonhuman systems. For instance, Alpine pastures and rocky mountain ranges which look like ‘wild’ nature but are in fact landscapes co-created artificially through cultivation’ and heavily exploited for skiing and other nature sports and tourism.

The installation overlaps a cinematic procedure with the architecture of the gallery space, intensifying the presence of the resulting imaginal space. One is both here in the all-encompassing space of the white cube and is at the same time drawn into the images of the suggested spaces. The very slow cross-fades invite the viewer into deeply immersive states while underlining the actual room. One’s gaze shifts between these two poles, internalizing the environment: One is both here and elsewhere. The Cube is a moving sculpture, a choreography of gaze, a performance of space.

The Cube is based on analogic dream logic: By weaving the organic, architectural and digital spaces, both the continuity of materialities as well as the logic of space constantly shift, placing the viewer into a perspective which is always multiple, allowing for the experience of multiplicity, and to occupy several space-times at the same time.

Produced by TILT. Made possible with the financial contribution of the Mondriaan Fund, Bundeskanzleramt Österreich and the Amsterdam Art Fund. Supported by the Vienna Art Foundation.

Review by Ramsay Burt at SPRING Festival in Utrecht, 2016

- Premiere: Kunstraum am Schauplatz, Vienna Art Foundation (AT), 2015
- SPRING Festival, Hekmanfoyer Stadsschouwburg, Utrecht (NL), 2016
- Weesperzijde Filmfestival, Spectra Studio, Marci Panis, Amsterdam (NL), 2017
- Spectra Salon: The Cube, the Salon and the Aquarium, Spectra Studio, Marci Panis, Amsterdam (NL), 2017
- Expeditions, Oerol Festival, Terschelling (NL), 2018
- KunstFestSpiele Herrenhausen, KUBUS, Hanover (DE), 2022


Fragment of the installation: The Cube at Vienna Art Foundation, 2015

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