April 25 – May 18, 2013




Laura McLardy, Flavia Spichtig

Curated by
Ulrike Gerhardt, Imke Kannegießer

•Ferrari Amaryllis•



For their installation Ferrari Amaryllis (2013), artists Laura McLardy and Flavia Spichtig have transplanted structures of 18th century garden architectures into the exhibition space. The projected sentence in NOTE ON’s front room is meant to serve as a »subtitle«, a sensual-systematic subtext for the walk through the installation:

»Descend via the right-hand staircase and take a stroll along the small allée, observing it whilst passing through, towards Saturn [1]; walk around it in a half circle and go towards Ile Royale [2]«.

This »caption« of their conceptual work is above all a choreographic script for visitors, stimulating the imagination and recontextualizing the emphatic linguistic ductus of the 18th century. With Ferrari Amaryllis McLardy and Spichtig connect to an artistic tendency since the 1990s, which conceives of the garden as a »model of a system« [3], thought or action. Parallel to the floor of the exhibition space, a minimalist construction of brown wooden modules spreads rhizomatically across the room, subverting the geometric order of baroque garden art. The ankle-high installation consists of two to three metres long elements, which lie horizontally next to or above one another, displaying several crossing and endpoints, some of which feature circular shapes made out of glass. This three-dimensional cartographic parcours is complemented by wall mountings holding folded machine-embroidered cloths. Onto these cloths, the artists have transcribed from former architectural plans and dance notations, elements that control or guide movement into abstract lines, formations and contours. The two different kinds of instructions for movement are perceived and staged as choreographic patterns.

The fragility of the floor installation and the positioning of the hung cloths animate visitors to move cautiously through the room. They are wading through a sparse and at the same time overly shaped landscape generated on the basis of deconstructed historic plans. Hence, Ferrari Amaryllis is the botanical name of a decorative plant. The species traces back to Swedish plant scientist Carl von Linné (1707-1778). Amaryllis is the name of a beautiful shepherdess in Virgil’s (70-19 BC) work and the Greek word »amaryssein« means »to sparkle, gleam, to shoot arrows from one’s eyes«. The »Ferrari Amaryllis« is characterized by a long stem, completed with four deep-red, sumptuous, star-shaped blossoms, which are symmetrically arranged.

In 1967 Michel Foucault theorized the garden as »a carpet on which the whole world reaches a symbolic perfection«[4]. In the case of McLardy’s and Spichtig’s installation, past and present cross each other; they have produced a »display«, a transitive surface for communication and movements of the visitors.

[1] The so-called »Saturn-Bassin« is one of the four fountains in the garden of Versailles, which portray the four seasons; Saturn represents winter.

[2] The »Île Royale« consists of the current Jardin du Roi as well as the Bassin du Miroir and is one of the bosquets of Versailles.

[3] See: Franzen, Brigitte: Die vierte Natur. Gärten in der zeitgenössischen Kunst. Köln 2000. pp. 17-18.

[4] Foucault, Michel: Die Heterotopien. Frankfurt am Main 2005. pp. 15.

Text: Ulrike Gerhardt

Laura McLardy (b. 1984, London/UK) is an Berlin based artist. She studied Fine Art and History of Art at Goldsmiths, University of London (BA, 2007) and was a participant at Institut für Raumexperimente (2009-2012), an educational research project by the artist Olafur Eliasson (UdK Berlin). She has been involved in various publication projects and published the first issue of her series Points in Line in 2012. Exhibition participations include (selection): »On Off Moments«, Grimmuseum, Berlin (2013, forthcoming), »Expanding the Grid«, Humboldt Galerie, Berlin (2012), »Berlin 2000-2011: Playing Amongst the Ruins«, Museum of Contemporary Art, Tokyo (2011). She has undertaken a research residency at »AZ West« in California, US (2012) as well as a residency scholarship at »Akademie Schloss Solitude« (2013).

Flavia Spichtig (b. 1985, Sarnen/CH) lives and works in Berlin. From 2006-2012 she studied Visual Arts at the University of Arts Berlin. Her work has been included in international group exhibitions and projects (selection), e.g. the Museum of Arts Lucerne »Zentralschweizer Kunstszenen« (2010), »Post-Studio-Tales« at District Kunst- und Kulturförderung Berlin (2012) and »Aufbau Kunsthalle Bremerhaven« (2010). In 2010 she organized the residency project BBS (Berlin-Basel-Sarnen). Her publication Serie von zehn Zeichnungen recently appeared from TLTRPRess.


Laura McLardy & Flavia Spichtig, Plan Model (2013), installation view (detail)Laura McLardy & Flavia Spichtig, Plan Model (2013), installation viewLaura McLardy & Flavia Spichtig, Plan View IV (2013), sculpturePlanansicht III, maschinell bestickter Stoff, 250 x 145cm, gefaltet auf HandtuchhalterLaura McLardy & Flavia Spichtig, Image Caption (2013)Image Caption (2015), installation view, first room, NOTE ON
Laura McLardy & Flavia Spichtig, Plan Model (2013), installation view (detail)

Laura McLardy & Flavia Spichtig, Plan Model (2013), installation view (detail)

Laura McLardy & Flavia Spichtig, Plan Model (2013), installation view

Laura McLardy & Flavia Spichtig, Plan Model (2013), installation view

Laura McLardy & Flavia Spichtig, Plan View IV (2013), sculpture

Laura McLardy & Flavia Spichtig, Plan View IV (2013), sculpture

Planansicht III, maschinell bestickter Stoff, 250 x 145cm, gefaltet auf Handtuchhalter

Laura McLardy & Flavia Spichtig, Plan View III (2013), sculpture

Laura McLardy & Flavia Spichtig, Image Caption (2013)

Laura McLardy & Flavia Spichtig, Image Caption (2013)

Laura McLardy & Flavia Spichtig, Image Caption (2013), installation view

Laura McLardy & Flavia Spichtig, Image Caption (2013), installation view