• In Dragon Time
  • 2023
  • Kunsthalle Düsseldorf

composition for three flatscreens, 7-channel audio, three lightbulbs, one moving head light, and four solenoids (14:23 min)

wood, metal, lava stones, polyurethane, aluminium, various textiles and clothing pieces, acoustic guitar, tree trunks, toy figures 

Documentation video, audio mixed for headphones
Installation views and details (photos 1, 2, 7 by Katja Illner)

At the Kunsthalle Düsseldorf, Fehr sets a fragile scene against a world of despair. The mixed-media environment In Dragon Time is the third part of the trilogy Ideas of Space and Time Collapsing (see also Hyperdusk, Movements That Are Hard To Replicate). 

A quartet of alter-egos are gathered around a hybrid sculpture that is simultaneously reminiscent of a volcano and a campfire situation. The volcano associated with a dystopian atmosphere is curiously mixed with the romanticism of a campfire as a setting for temporary community. At the top of the structure, three screens create the illusion of a fire, while further layers of imagery unravel a complex web of narratives. While mold-like coats of polyurethane cover wood, lava stone, clothing, replicas of fire-making tools made out of the same material are scattered about. The four figures, each equipped with speakers, solenoids, microphones, and lights, interact with each other in sync to the video loop. Whether by standing near them or listening via headphones, we experience a multitude of voices trying to establish harmony. They sing songs by Fehr’s newly founded chamber folk ensemble Group Hug, as well as choral compositions by Beach Boys and John Tavener. They share myths, anecdotes, personal thoughts and feelings that oscillate between themes of grief, nostalgia, faith, and longing for communion. 

Stills from video loop
As part of the exhibition opening, In Dragon Time was activated by a performance for four voices called I Just Want To Start A Flame In Ur <3 and was performed by a chamber choir Fehr co-founded earlier that year. In doing so, Fehr attempts to translate the crisis nature of our time into a productive form of togetherness.

Performance stills (photo credit: Katja Illner)