Monumente des AugenblicksArtur van Balen, 2017
It seems inevitable that demonstrations and social gatherings will take on a different character in these times of digitalization and pandemic. Artist, researcher, and activist Artur van Balen examines what this change entails and how our future actions will take form. How are we going to communicate our demands and desires?
This giant inflatable sculpture (Helikite) is loosely based on the helium-filled figures that were used for mass manifestations in the Soviet Union and United Stated in the 1930s. Remarkably, the two superpowers used the same techniques to entice spectators and win supporters for opposing ideologies. Van Balen’s ‘Nazisnake’ is a schematic version, without eyes or ears. Only on closer inspection you see the swastika, sewn on its head in the same fabric as the rest of the sculpture. It is a warning of the artist against the trickery of fascism. Like snakes, ideologies have a habit of shedding their old skin to take on a new guise.