Lines of Live – the world is bound with secret knots

« Our experience of the world is less of a long life developing through time than that of a network that connects points and intersects with its own skein »

Michel Foucault, « Des Espaces autres » 1984

Gundi Falk’s work occupies a territory between drawing, painting, and sculpture but lies closest to drawing. Given that she is also a trained dancer, an inquiry into the language of the body must be added to the roster of her interrogations.

Drawing on paper as the fundamental support material, the artist uses the line as the element that generates form and, as such the determinante way of perceiving the world. Very much like a dancer who traces dynamic lines across the stage and also draws with point, line and plane, the artist pushes the line into real space and ultimately into the third dimension connecting it with painting, sculpture and dance.

Isa Dreyer

Longing for a space ‘without dimensions’, Falk transforms linear drawings into 3 dimensional pieces that seem to translate cosmic forces in an attempt to express the immensity of space – the univers – not scientifically nor philosophically nor allegorically, but through the comprehension or resonance of the self.

Falk’s works are conceived as events of pure energy in a differently imagined timespace. In her complex personal language, a way of taking everything and describing its relations to everything else one hears echos of the Russian Suprematists who believed these linear depictions could reflect the forces of the cosmos.

It becomes clear that even when line breaks down in apparent chaos, there are forms of order, of an order yet to be understood. Falk explores the interconnections of numerous lines and their constitution of networks of meaning.

The occurrence of nodal points in these linear constructions recall the Buddhist concept of Indra’s net in its pronouncement of universal interconnectedness and interdependency :

when any node in the net(work) is touched, every other node is also affected, since not only does each node reflect all the others but its very existence is dependent on all the others. What appears to have independent, permanent existence is actually the consequence of many interacting forces ; reality only takes form to the extent that it arises from an interdependent matrix of parts.

In this vein, the assumption that the world is bound with secret knots, as described by the 17th century Jesuit scholar Athanasius Kircher in his intuitive philosophical understanding of the interdependency of all things, seems less and less naive.

These linear drawings represent the backbones of an interactive narrative, indicating some type of influence, but not what type of influence. Falk seems to be interested in exploring places where the mind is not able to make a decission, where thought, once linear and progressive has evolved into a kind of network, something more fluid, open, simultaneous and undefined.

Shadow is also a significant and unpredictable element, since its own linear configuration is determined by the position of light. It is as the artist, by freeing a material from itself, is able to free herself from herself in an effort to overcome identity.

As Duchamp once remarked, « To all appearences, the artist acts like a mediumistic being who, from the labyrinth beyond time and space, seeks his way out to a clearing ». 1

Everything in the Univers can be understood as information, abstract forces that are phisically possible or describable and that only exist through the materialisation into the ‘figurative’ which, in turn , does not differ from the ‘abstract’ since there is only a question of scale.

Largely influenced by the Cubist drive to construct and experience movement within the flat picture plane, she also explores her interest in the dadaist and surrealist experiments with chance and the irrational through the so-called automatic drawing.

Paul Klee’s definition of drawing as »taking a line for a walk », aimlessly for the sake of the line becomes a plane, and a plane becomes a body is also reflected in the more expressive drawings of the artist. Letting the line loose to meander with the vageries of erotic desire, she presents a space without limits, where bodies, animals, objects float in an infinite space. Falk’s engagement with the real, the carnal and the corporeal, with movement and chance is most apparent in these erotic and sexually charged rolls.

The artist situates herself in a generative in-between, thriving on the interdependency of drawing, painting, sculpture and dance, reflecting on notions of chance and movement, interconnections and interdependency in a new globalised world.

Isa Dreyer