For the Furnace commission, Greenland Street has invited Goshka Macuga to realise her most ambitious installation to date. Macuga's practice explores the boundaries that define exhibition structures and seeks to put the categories of curator and gallery into a new relationship with each other by hosting the work of other artists within her own immersive environments. Her installations and displays question authorship and hierarchies of value inherent within 'High Art'. Artworks are often displayed alongside artefacts, souvenirs, mementos and scrap that she collects, finds, borrows and purchases.
For Greenland Street, Macuga working in collaboration with If-Untitled Architects will create an all encompassing environment based on set designs from the film The Cabinet of Dr Caligari. Directed in 1919 by Robert Wiene, the film is well know for the brilliance of its set design and set designer Hermann Warm enlisted Walter Reimann and Walter Roehrig, fellow members of Berlin's Der Sturm group, to act as art directors. They created the unprecedented look of the sets, costumes and makeup to reflect the mind of a madman and succeeded in embodying the aesthetic of the Expressionist movement.
Taking inspiration from the films set, Macuga's installation will utilise the dynamic architecture of the Furnace in order to create elevated walkways, a complex of corridors filled with display cabinets, rotating platforms, hidden rooms and anti-chambers, all of which will combine to create an abstracted and distorted landscape.Within this complex and intriging structure, she plans to curate a series of theatrical tableaux, performances and exhibitions of artworks, objects and curiosities many of which will be borrowed from local, regional and national museums.
Audiences will be invited to navigate on, in and around the installation and will be given the option to take a guided tour, where Gallery Assistants will lead groups of up to ten visitors through different journeys, imparting snipets of narrative, based on the immediate environment and the objects displayed within.