Evil lurks in our lived existence, omnipresent but hidden. Evil and Live are anagrammatic palindromes, two sides of a linguistic coin. The reciprocal presence of evil and live is elementary and inescapable in the Berlin artist’s photographs, videos and sculptures. Though not all of his works are so viciously scathing, hard to digest or filled with a steadily swelling sadness as some reveal unexpected architectonic spatial solutions, display childlike enthusiasm, prompt a shake of the head, or have a penchant for the often morbid Viennese humour.
However a cold shudder frequently washes over us with the human subjects. Enveloped by the lurid aftertaste of a transgression we did not want to be aware of, we are overwhelmed by the encounters with marginalised groups. These visualisations of often overseen situations are neither moralising nor confrontational. They offer and nurture a tender vulnerability, one that prompts us to actively pause and linger with the gravity of it all. Like a juggling act of all the emotions stirred, we are torn between the decision to immerse in the suffering of the world or betray our empathy and proceed to the next agreeable motif. Decide for the first, we abruptly find ourselves in the temporality of active standstill. For Lars Eidinger this stasis is equal to death. Death renders life appealing, its stagnation draws nourishment from the emotive dynamism of life. “Good as the opposite of evil is, in a sense, equivalent to it, as is the way of all opposites,” writes Simone Weil.¹ The contradictions opening up between good death and evil life are omnipresent in the artist’s work.
Exhibition: Lars Eidinger – ƎVI⅃
Exhibition duration: February 9th – March 26th 2022
Address and contact:
Schleifmühlgasse 3, 1040, Vienna
¹ Simone Weil, Gravity and Grace, London / New York 1952 (1947), p. 70