Changing Room

Changing Room

2002 – video projection on a curtain and acrylic glass, Length: 16'12"

This work was first shown at Galerie Gabriele Rivet Köln stand at the Art Cologne fair in 2002. One side of the one-meter-20-centimeter-wide storage room was open but barricaded with a 40-centimeter-high acrylic glass plate which stood on the floor. Above that a white curtain hung. A video beamer and DVD player were placed within the booth.

The visitors could see a projection from outside in which a woman seems to take her clothes on and off behind the curtain. Her movements appeared only as shadows on the cloth, but that also gave the viewers the sense that what they were seeing was quite real. Behind the acrylic plate below, her legs, as well as her clothes as they fell to the ground, revealed her actions. Sounds could be heard from the booth, such as "That color doesn't look good on me at all!", "I look fat in that!", "I'm too old to wear that!", and "You can see my underwear lines". Comments which say a lot about the woman's self and body image as reflected in the mirror. Comments, however, which also seem to be directed at the viewers or people waiting outside, thereby making them performers in this scene as well as in video.

"Changing Room" not only means a place to change clothes, but can also mean a "room that changes". The projection thus turns a doorway or storage room into a changing room, a gallery or art fair into a boutique or department store. Who isn't familiar with standing in or in front of a changing booth? Looking in from outside: little stages with theater curtains, behind which the really exciting activities seem to be taking place. An interplay between masking and unmasking, the visible and the invisible. In the end, the frustrated woman leaves the changing room, and another woman laden with clothing disappears behind the curtain.

Following the presentation at the Art Cologne fair in 2002, the work was shown in the "Face to Face" exhibition at the Galerie Gabriele Rivet Köln (Cologne) from October 30 - December 21, 2002.

Actresses: Hilke Hillebrand and Kerstin Bergmann