Circuits (Interpassivities)

October 26 - December 28 2018

Galleri Nicolai Wallner is pleased to present Circuits (Interpassivities), a solo exhibition of new works by Jesper Just.

A large-scale film screen stands in the space, held up by the help of cement blocks and beams. Parts of the screen are missing, still streaming but scattered through the space as if they were pieces of a puzzle waiting to be put together. The fragmented placement of the screens and cement blocks creates the feeling of a world being both built and destroyed at the same time, and creates a physical demand on the viewer to move throughout the space in order to see the screen as a whole, with elements remaining constantly out of sight.

The screen plays a film on loop. Echoing this emphasis on the body, it features five classically trained dancers. Electrical wires are attached to their limbs, and as the film progresses it is revealed that the accompanying musical score is sending timed electro-stimulations through the wires, causing their limbs to contract and move.

In the second space, three prints are shown of photographs taken at Times Square in New York in November 2015 when Just’s film work Servitudes played simultaneously on fifty screens, amongst the iconic billboard images, logos, news banners, flashing lights, neon signs and video advertisements. In the film, a woman eats a cob of corn. Her hands and fingers are assisted by a Continuous Passive Motion (CPM) device—used in physical rehabilitation.

The wires attached to the ballet dancers and the CPM device attached to the woman both restrict but also enhance the body, taking it a step away from something purely corporeal— or rather, a step away from what we consider to be “the body” in an ideal sense.

The connections that exist between ideas of identity, authority, bodies, and the question of being “whole” are explored and challenged by Just, who presents us with these archetypes of beauty, youth, strength and elegance while at the same time negating their ability to perform the way we expect them to.

Within the paradigm of this juxtaposition, the narrative remains deliberately open-ended.

The film Circuits (Interpassivities) features dancers from the Royal Danish Ballet, Astrid Elbo, Stephanie Cheng, Elenora Ruth, Sebastian Haynes, and Benjamin Buza, with musical composition by August Rosenbaum. Servitudes features actress Dree Hemingway.

Jesper Just (b. 1974, Denmark) has shown extensively around the world, representing Denmark at the 55th Venice Biennale in 2013. His work can be found in the public collections of the Metropolitan Museum of Art (New York), the Guggenheim Museum (New York), MoMA (New York), Tate Modern (London), Kiasma (Helsinki), Musée d’Art Moderne (Luxembourg), Moderna Museet (Sweden), the National Museum of Modern and Contemporary Art (Seoul), the Danish National Gallery (Copenhagen), Arken Museum (Ishøj), ARoS (Aarhus), Louisiana Museum (Humlebæk) and Herning Kunstmuseum (Herning) among many others.

In November 2018, Jesper Just will continue his work with installation and ballet, with a new performance opening at Brooklyn Academy of Music in New York with dancers from the American Ballet Theatre.

carrie emberlyn