Picture This! (1)

Ung kultur, Västerås
18.12.2000 – 8.1.2001

”Mounted a bit too high up on a window wall, a row of dioramas have the spectators climbing on radiators in order to follow an open-ended narrative describing the activities of a Mr. Rose. The placement of the dioramas and the peeping through to see the images, thrives shamelessly on the voyeuristic pleasure that is a natural inclination for most of us. Mr. Rose, acted out by the artist himself is a transparent, anonymous, male presence immaculately dressed in a grey suit and always seen from behind. For every diorama there are three different ways of perceiving the scene, using left, right or both eyes. One of the two mono visions exclude Mr. Rose, which makes his appearance and disappearance all the more ghostlike as you move from left to right eye and backwards again. Mr. Rose fondles a girl-friend, goes for a walk in the park, falls into a bush, enjoys himself in a playground, eats alone in a diner and takes a ride in the underground all seemingly to his environments utter indifference.
In wireless headphones that enable you to move freely in between the images, a soundtrack provides the scenes with a sentimental distance and underscores the illusiveness of Mr. Rose with forgotten disco hits like Imagination´s ”It´s just an illusion”. Yes, you’ve heard the songs before, you just don´t know when or where. Mr. Rose is not just another human existence gone by unnoticed but rather the extra possibility inherent in every situation.”

Helena Sundström
Visual Arts Administration/Royal College of Art, London

The Audio-CD ”16 possible soundtracks for Mr. Rose” offers a different approach towards a more filmic perception of the photo-series. By proposing a range of songs, whose lyrics may as well function as a script, a new level is added to this open narrative. Well hidden amidst the other songs, Hangl provides his own, in which he sings about the exhibition’s central character. In spite of being very wordy, ”Mr. Rose” reveals nothing much about him, again leaving the audience to its own imagination.


hereandgone (1)
Ung kultur, Västerås, 18.12.2000, 18 hrs. (duration: 25 min.)
actors: Roland Hedlund, Inger Norryd, Oliver Hangl
soundtrack by: UKO, UKO/Oliver Hangl

A film-like narrative scene, which is pictured in the photo-exhibition, is played live by two characters accompanied by a soundtrack, just like an imagined clip from the (non-existing) movie "Picture This!" comes alive.
The performances-setting makes use of Ung Kultur’s architectural characteristics: one of its large-window-front offices is turned into three adjacent flats (each separated by a fake wall) for the performance, which can be looked into from across. Out of a 10-meter-distance, the audience is placed on the balcony-like extension of the second floor’s exhibition space, a clearly voyeuristic position.

read the script

>>> Picture This! (2) and hereandgone (2)