With her installation in the Rotunda visitors enter the roofed-in space through the open mouths of her monstrous Heads
MONSTER CHETWYND. A CAT IS NOT A DOG
3 MARCH – 29 MAY 2023
The art of Monster Chetwynd (b. 1973) interacts directly with the public. The British artist achieved fame with her exuberant and humorous performances employing handmade costumes, props, and stage sets. Her works are often absurd and full of the joys of life, and refer to popular culture or iconic works from history. With her installation in the publicly accessible Rotunda of the SCHIRN, the artist reacts directly and playfully to the architecture of the location and has visitors enter the roofed-in space through the open mouths of her monstrous Heads. Here Chetwynd is referring at the same time to a motif from the Christian pictorial tradition: the “Hellmouth” or Gateway to Hell. As a passageway or entrance it was also modified, for example, in the Sacro Bosco near Bomarzo, an Italian sculpture garden from the sixteenth century, as well as in the artist Niki de Saint Phalle’s Tarot Garden in Tuscany. In Chetwynd’s work, too, walking along the passageway opens up an alternative space to the real outside world. Sustainability and participation are essential for Chetwynd’s creative activities; at the Schirn the artist makes existing sculptures tangible in a new, location-specific form.