White Star (fuse box) 2018, Dominican monastery, Prague

The works White Star (fuse box) und Black & White (missing) address two room niches whose visual appearance in the monastery’s architecture are very different but which have a shared genesis. Both niches originated from bricked up vaulted arches when the rooms were repurposed.

In the second vaulted arch of the refectory, which is now used as a space for cultural events, architecture and image have come into a conflict. For when the former domestic wing of the monastery was partitioned off and the arch was bricked up, three Baroque frescos were walled over and cut off in such a way that they were robbed of one third of their pictorial surface.

With the Baroque adaptation of a radiant oval of light, the foyer of the refectory, which Josef Pleskot reconstructed in 2016, presents itself as a kind of minimalistic painting. However, on closer inspection the central niche in the room has a flaw. A fuse box enters the image of the architecture in such a prominent and unintentional way that one is tempted to want to blank out the functional element.

White Star (fuse box)

In the end, I did not succumb to the attempt to blank out the fuse box; on the contrary: in my works, it is precisely the unaesthetic, because functional parameters of a space, that become material. Thus White Staris constituted out of the overlaying of the midpoints of the fuse box and the niche, or it shifts into the center of the work through the diagonals that mark it.

By its reversal into White Star, the black wall drawing, which by analogy would have to bear the title Black Star, makes reference to my aspiration to address the foyer in its spatial entirety. The lines of the work continue on the edges of the wall and arches of the vault in the sense of a spatial drawing, which involves a form of appropriating the space. The goal of my intervention is to set a counterpoint to Josef Pleskot’s oval of light, whereby the brilliant spatial curves and visual axes can be traced back to the dimensions and position of a succinct fuse box.