By Sibin Vassilev & Fabian Bleisch, 2013
Length: 09:40 min
Variable dimensions: between H 4.90 m x W 5 m and H 5.50 m x W 7.50 m 48 light bulbs, glass, 7 loud-speakers, cables, 2 computers, light and sound patches
In the installation Edison (2013), more than a century after the mass distribution of electric light bulbs, Sibin Vassilev and Fabian Bleisch explore once more the controversial links between politics, ideology and industry. Using light, different sounds, and voices, they create an installation that is about the topical issue of replacing the old electric bulbs by energy-efficient light bulbs.
In the installation light bulbs hanging from the domed space light up and go out, thus forming ever changing, abstract rhythmic constellations. As the visitors walk among them, sounds and voices can be heard coming from different directions. The sound composition is particularly dramaturgic and rather staged: there are various sounds being heard, they stop, or flow into music. A recorded voice switches on, and we recognize an expert commenting on the issue… The work relies as much on the verbal communication to the viewer as on the associative one.
The sounds bring the viewers back to the mechanical era of the industrializing society and then into the present again while documenting and referring to the “language” of radio and television broadcasts. The installation by Sibin Vassilev and Fabian Bleisch is a work as much about the real harm of energy-saving light bulbs as it is about the market that has become a factor regulating our conditions of living and ruling the actual political choices. While resembling a “documentary” theatre of lights, voices and sounds the work manages to stimulate an emotional and critical distance of the viewers. In a rather Brechtian approach the artists further distance politics from its actuality into a different but also political realm such as the theater or the exhibition space.
Excerpts from a text by Vladiya Mihaylova
Concept, multichannel sound environment, music, patching: Sibin Vassilev
Concept, construction, light art, patching: Fabian Bleisch