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Bucket (2002)

Roman Signer

Roman Signer links commonplace items to art actions in order to crate what he calls ‘action sculptures’. HIs work is based on carefully controlled alterations of ordinary objects, mostly through explosives or fireworks, or through other physical modifications. Signer is concerned with the process of movement and material transformation, as when he blows up items such as balloons, buckets and bicycles. His so-called ‘sculptural moments’ are carefully arranged and meticulously planned processes that create a transitory buy highly spectacular event. If executed in a gallery or museum, the traces are left as evidence of the performance and they become what could describe as an accidental sculpture. Other pieces take place outdoors and are documented on video or in photographic sequences that are later shown in exhibition spaces or publications. The relationship of cause and effect in Signer’s pieces can be compared to scientific investigations but his performances are set up to create an enchanting mess, since the outcome of the experiments is usually unpredictable. In Bucket, the artist crouches beneath rows of buckets arranged in a square. The buckets are filled with water and are attached to the ceiling. When Signer pushes a trigger, the buckets all fall to the ground at the same time, maintaining the shape of the square. When they hit the ground, they release the water like fountains, in powerful vertical trajectories.

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