Empire Yellow Vase ʻThe Absurd Made Fleshʼ by Michael Kvium
Handmade in Portugal by Raawii
Consumed by the freedom of the exploration of a new medium, the first two of Kvium’s three design pieces completed for 'Raawii' were at first meant only as experiments. However, such liberation resulted in not only one but two final works, a vase (available in seven colours) and platter centrepiece (available in three colours), themselves revealing an essential element of the artist’s iconographic unconscious.
Cascading over the lips and within the hollows of the vase and serving plate, fleshy, bulbous, interconnected masses, first composed by Kvium in his notebooks as early as the 1980s, present to the spectator an essential idiom in the artist’s pantheon.
Representing at turns the embryonic, entrails, or moribund remains, within these lugubrious, wanton formless forms lies the trace of an intense ideological struggle which, for the artist, shall determine no less than the very future of life on this earth. Indeed, in Kvium’s work, such formless masses have attained a forthright political connotation.
Appearing as a sculptural, interconnected alien, labyrinthine, immersive installation in the final room of the artist’s highly charged Circus Europa from 2017-18 at the Arken Museum of Modern Art, these homunculi or viscera present to the viewer the possible consequences for human life in the aftermath of continued, unmitigated ecological destruction.