Bacteria and video installation at

Moderna Museet - Modern Museum

Stockholm - October 19 /1996 - January 12 /1997



An installation made for Moderna Museet's show "On Time, New Swedish Art".

A corridor conducts to a white-blue room. At the wall of the corridor, 24 small transparent boxes were showing different virus and bacteria cultures. These boxes were used in "The Dinner Event" as seating-cards and in them the breath of the companions at table was conserved.

Each box became the internal portrait of each one of the persons invited. Highly personal, alive, and in continuous growth. At the same time inside each box, a battle of life and death: cultures trying to eliminate mutually in the continuous fight for the vital space.

In the white room, the "floating" floor had no contact with the walls and was covered with a white carpet to contrast the feeling of the Museum's cement floor. The lightning, blue neon tubes, the same as used in the public toilets (to make impossible for the drug-addicts to inject in their veins), gave a cold and clinic atmosphere. The cacophony of a big dinner invaded the space.

In the middle of this room a glass suspended in the air (5 m x 0,80 m), at the standard table's high. Four video projectors placed under the floor were showing the complete dinner with no cuts or editing, three hours long (cinema verité?).

Getting close to the table you could see hands coming and going with food and drinks and at the same time listen to the commensals and follow the discussion in five different languages, getting more and more corrupted, from the appetisers to the dessert. Quite torturing if you were hungry.

At one table's end, on the wall, a second culture's growing: Languages. Each one of the twenty boxes had a small silk paper with a text in the original language that slowly was disintegrating with the advance of the bacteria.


At the other end: A bleeding rosary.

The rosary was made with those red pills that show the bacteria growing in your mouth. At the opening day Ingrid made a performance licking all the rosary's stations through and making a tongue-painting (tongue: lingua -> lingual-painting -> language)

... ..


And that was it, but, for the desperate souls, we add a particular bonus at the Museum's bookstore: Misterios Gozosos (Pleasant Mysteries), a "do it yourself" kit to take home.