Max van Olffeninstagramemailwebsite

Speaking in Gunk

A stain left by some passer by, a blob of paint, a scratch left to signal presence, when do these different marks stop being meaningless and start to constitute information? How do you place yourself in the chaos of time? What is valuable information and what is a discarded remnant? When does a simple trace of existence or an accidental trace transition into something culturally or historically important?
This installation explores layers of marks made by different entities, or imaginary entities, forming a diagram of the archaeology of my own life and the world at large.
They equate my life with a transhistorical visual language to simultaneously place myself inside and outside of history and my own time. The uncovered artifacts of a constructed alternate history where made up mysterious pasts and my silly existence live side by side.
Speculative excavations and collections form a timeline of what might have been and still might be. Monolithic testaments to not knowing poured onto the old familiar rectangle.
Primal traces of presence, some seemingly holding indecipherable forgotten knowledge, some being discarded pieces of nonsense, placed in a non hierarchical mass of paint, collected and ritualistically displayed with a primal urgency.
The walls of paint, emulating cave walls, computer screens and everything in between, full of dirt as well as gems, are obsessively trying to be nothing and everything at once.