Van Malderen reminds us that the ‘selfie’ often takes us away from the present moment and as a
consequence exposes us temporarily to peripheral danger. The mirror sets up a tension between
the attraction for the reflection (and the ever-irresistible selfie) and the fear of its razor-sharp
edges. The work is a metaphor for the potential consequences involving our ever-increasing self-referential
This work came together rather intuitively after reading the words ‘fake brittle reality’ online. It brings together Van Malderen’s ongoing fascination with mirrors as a material and the reactions they provoke in our age of the selfie. Fake Brittle Reality sets up a tension between the attraction for the reflection (and the ever irresistible selfie) and the fear/danger for harm (due to the sharpness) on the other hand. The selfie often takes us away from the present moment and has led to numerous injuries and fatalities. The mirror, the reflection and the echo are a rich and reoccurring theme in the field of philosophy, as much as they are in contemporary cultural theories and reflections about the world wide web.
Is the reflection or the bounce true? Or is it just a fake brittle reality?
This component forms part of Good ConditionsIn Good Conditions, Kris Van Dessel and Tom Van Malderen build upon their previous collaboration Conditions and Opportunities at DMW Art Space in 2017. Together with curator Tram Scawped, the artists continue their quest into the protocols of exhibiting and the mechanism of the contemporary art economy in general. Their previous collaboration at DMW investigated the conditions and opportunities of the ‘art space’ by means of a series of minimal in situ interventions, ranging from subtle modifications of lighting and heating elements to enquiries into the appropriate shade of white for the walls of a white cube. Following up on this expo, 'Good Conditions' explores the application and potential of autonomous artworks as components of a dense art-fair-look-alike constellation. As part of this enquiry, all prices of the works on display are fixed in accordance with the inscrutable laws of the art economy and arranged in an easy-reference component list with accompanying article numbers.
Component 0006 (hang on) Truss / Component 1000 The last plastic Bag / Component 1212 Snowflake(s) / Component 1313 Something from Nothing – flex rose / Component 1696 Food and Shelter / Component 1936 ERNST (Neufert) II / Component 1964 EPCOT Frozen / Component 2000 Hype Cycle / Component 2019 Mixed History / Component 2022 Lonely Musk / Component 2121 Two out of One / Component 2410 Ritual #3 / Component 2424 Something from Nothing – mustard / Component 2512 Always Xmas / Component 4446 The Angel binding Satan / Component 4847 Ritual #4 / Component 6563 Information Committee / Component XXXX Tram Scawped
Conditions and Opportunities
photo credits: We Document Art, & Tom Van Malderen