December 30th, 2008  | Categories: Bidder vs. Ledia Carroll    « Older Entries   |   Newer Entries »  

What will remain at the end of time, when all of man’s paintings, sculptures and artistic, socio-cultural collage-huts have become weathered and worn? When the floodwaters ebb after the climate catastrophe, the world is going to be a beach with no bathers. Sand survives every culture, and if the recession ends up turning all our museums into dust, even the best and most influential curators will have built on sand. The longer you think about it, the more universal Ledia Pearl Carroll’s artistic material seems: a truckload of sand, which is tipped out to create a sand dune in the exhibition space.

But actually, although she does not say so, the artist is concerned with something else. She transforms our exhibition space in the SF MOMA into something like a black hole. The purified, sieved sand that she uses is light-coloured and attractive like the yellow ochre on a painter’s palette, certainly. But sand has no form. Whatever you do with it, its own amorphous nature wins in the end. You can ponder for as long as you like. You can sit down on the sand, leave things on it, dribble substances onto it – sand always remains sand. It just lies around in the exhibition – sleepy and still like the undeviating coastline of Miami Beach, while inside in the Convention Centre the art fair comes to nothing.

But hang on a minute; we are beginning to sound like strategists in a desert war! We have completely forgotten that art is not a tactical weapon. Sand is beautiful. The consistency and granularity of sand can be a wonder of nature. This washed sand “Olympia #2” from the south of San Francisco is “a beautiful light colour” and when you let it trickle through your hands onto the floor it falls in a charming way. Or at least that is what Ledia Pearl Carroll tells us during the run-up to the installation; she has created a painting of a singular kind – pure abstract and yet one hundred percent concrete.

And in the end, she is quite right. A sand dune has taken possession of the museum. The audience strolls along to the right and left of a strip of bare parquet between two ‘hills’. Interaction is now all about trying to grasp something formless. Bidding will restart on January 1st, 2009. Once again, you can acquire the right to alter the exhibition space in a series of auctions. This is PWC Level 2. New game. Next level of difficulty. Why not show the sand who’s in charge here? Together with Ledia Pearl Carroll, we look forward to your tactical moves.