Wer nicht umsteigt, wird abgeschaltet (2012)
From related corporate moves to its cultural uses, television has been the subject of numerous works by Simon Denny. The artist takes television sets as a sculptural material to be deconstructed or rearranged in order to investigate their influence on contemporary visual perception. Accompanied by accessories like box sets of the 1990s American series “The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air” (as in DVD Box Projection Table, 2009) or a timeline documenting the development of state-sponsored television at the time of the passport’s redesign in Denny’s home country of New Zealand (as in the artist’s award-winning Art Statements installation at Art Basel in 2012) – Denny’s televisions serve as both site and sign of changes in contemporary culture. The edition that Denny has conceived for “Texte zur Kunst” takes up a recent decision by electronics manufacturer Panasonic to phase out analogue television in favor of digital-only; a digitally designed motif reproduces the Japanese corporation’s advertisement for the switchover but creates a hardcore aesthetic pastiche by combining it with several other layered images, including a series of gory plastic eyeballs strung together with a remote and a USB cord. Integrated into the backside of a matte black, scratch-resistant Smart Cover fitting the iPad 2, the edition bridges the gap to another cutting-edge piece of technology. As a result, the object is curious in its quasi-dependency, since it could be attached and used or else left separate and displayed as a mere shell. Encapsulated in the work’s title (“Whoever doesn’t change over will be turned off” – taken from the Panasonic advertisement for the event), the edition attends to the tech industry’s – like all culture industries’ – perpetual move forward.
Digital print on iPad 2 Smart Cover, Size of the motif: 15.8 × 21.4 cm, Edition: 100 + 20 A.P., signed and numbered on the inside, 290.– Euros plus shipping.