Free Visit 2016, St. Salvator Church, Prague (CZ)

Red carpeting, on the floor and above one’s head, surround visitors and church-goers when entering St. Salvator. The lowest point of a monumental space curve just behind the main entrance seems to push them to the floor—causing their glances to glide upward to the crossing dome as they proceed along the carpeting. However, the work experiences its actual point of culmination before the step to the high altar, where worldly and heavenly spheres touch.

The concept for the work follows the traditional shrouding of visual works of art and altars during Lent. Here it negates a shade of color in keeping with the liturgy, yet it places the priest at the center of the event while performing High Mass.

With a strictly axial arrangement derived from the floor plan, Free Visit adopts the Baroque dramaturgy of the church interior and the patterns of geometric spatial concepts of Renaissance and Baroque architects that underlay the architecture. By means of a minimal intervention, cutting through the elaborate embellishment of the church interior, it appears in a completely different light.

With reference to its origins in the art of the Renaissance and the Baroque period, the work applies Donald Judd and Robert Morris’s criticism of European art of the 20th century and experiences a kind of dissolution. The church interior as a work of art and the space of the viewer no longer oppose each other irreconcilably, but penetrate one another.

Material:  red carpet, aluminium-profiles, wire cable