Moarg Kiel, 2011
Palais de Tokyo, Paris
Morag Keil is presenting an innovative installation at the Palais de Tokyo. The work of Morag keil is expressed in many different mediums, with installation, painting and film constituting a very personal formal language within which identity and how it is constructed are questioned. Although it is never explicit, the complexity of adolescence as well as projection or interpretation of other runs through the artist’s works like a leitmotif. Apprenticeship and self-perception are tackled with great detachment.
The exhibition devised for the Palais de Tokyo, entitled “Moarg Kiel”, a wordplay based on the spelling of the artist’s name, like an avatar name people use on internet, questions identity as it is being constructed through several creative works that echo one another. The video presented as a loop is akin to a video game that has been voided of its own rules and has no beginning or end. The characters, each carrying a camera, walk around in a universe where the only constant is their own trajectory. Sometimes a human form can be glimpsed, but it is only an anonymous individual without a gender. Alongside it, a bench from the Metro, coming from a familiar, even commonplace world is like a sofa in the middle of a living-room. The exhibition space is inhabited by dummies or artificial characters made of plastic or fabrics, with hard or soft bodies, while a moving machine is constantly running. This “sex machine”, a rudimentary mechanical object with violence implicit in its own form, calls for a sexual interpretation, echoing the film. The isolated ongoing movement of both creates a passive, endless loop in time.
The works, as a whole that the visitor can observe and assimilate, then become a stage set, an extract frozen in time. Could it perhaps be described as a psychological diorama?