Mark Swysen

the utopia of prolonged security in the occidental mind

The installation, a construction made of thin aluminium bars in the form of a globe supports numerous pointed and transparent umbrellas attached to the meridians, the equator, and the arctic and antarctic circles. In the core one can distinguish the subtle sound of a human heartbeat, protected from all sides by the cocoon of umbrellas. What seems to be a solid construction appears vulnerable at close quarters: the aluminium globe is held together by mere adhesive tape and the plastic umbrellas can easily be ruptured. The bubble appears appealing to the eye, yet is ready to burst.

The (western) human being in this 21st century is confronted with a new world view. On all sides the “dangerous” outside world creeps closer and the walls of ancient certitudes fall to pieces. The Arab world gives birth to new democratic springs, quickly annihilating into force of arms and bloody violence. The banking and real estate crises are culprit to the crucifixion of the last canonized certainties of the occident: the perpetual value of property in the form of building bricks and savings deposits is being blasphemed!
New economic powers are resolutely raising their heads in China, Brazil and India. Disabled by its rigid logics, the European Union makes desperate attempts to turn the financial and economic tide. Losing their handhold, masses grow scared and feelings are stirred op. Spontaneous “occupy”-movements are giving voice to this people’s protest.

Desperately, the 21st-century’s European clings to the comfort of his secured environment and effects insurance policies against all possible calamities.