Venus Jasper is a queer visual artist, storyteller, world builder, performative priestess, researcher, educator, writer, and curator, currently based in Amsterdam, Netherlands.

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Darkness is light germinating

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The installation comprised two tables, photo prints of Dolmen, soil from sacred sites, a plastic sheet, copper rods, a forked stick, water basins + pumps, an ultrasonic myst maker and pure woolen blankets. Also: photos from the first S T O N E O R G Y concert-ritual.

This installation was created for the show, Orgonomics, a group exhibition curated by Padraic E. Moore at Garage Rotterdam. The show was conceived in response to theories postulated by the Austrian psychoanalyst and biophysicist Wilhem Reich (1897-1957). In particular, this exhibition focuses on orgone––the primordial energy Reich claimed to have discovered in 1939, the name of which is a portmanteau of orgasm and ozone. Initially, Reich’s theories were rooted in psychiatry and Sigmund Freud’s theories on the libido.

The work, comprised of two low tables, represented a anstraction of my current research into pagan sacred sites, burial mounds and Dolmen (hunebedden). The tables were accompanied by a selection of the drawing series Trans Neolithic Future, the works of Dorothy Fadiman, Christoph Keller, Christine Ödlund, Annie Ratti and Kenneth White. Also, the first live performance of S T O N E O R G Y took place at this exhibition.

Padraic E. Moore: "Griepink's installation was conceived specifically for this exhibition but brings together several strands of research that he has been working on for some time, such as European paganism and the revival of earth centered spiritualities.

The work consists of a series of platforms upon which are arranged organic and synthetic materials; soil, dirt, moisture, copper, wood, water, wool, photoprints of a portal dolmen (known as Hunebed in the Netherlands) and some electrical appliances. Seemingly disparate materials come together, forming an elemental arrangement that evokes both an altar and perhaps something less sacred and more functional.

The title of the work refers to the idea of winter being a time of hibernation and dormancy; when plants and animals slow down and assume a state that is in many ways close to death. The title in turn reflects notions of the therapeutic and spiritual journey where turning inwards towards one's darkness can yield profound transformation. Faced with the global political situation of today's world, void of nature and the sacred, Griepink wonders if a similar process of darkness germinating is at play.

Stemming on these contemplations, the work presents itself as a new kind of sacred megalithic site, comprised of stones, history, earth and vibration. Interestingly, some recent investigators have drawn connections to Reich's accumulators and ancient sites (such a Newgrange in Ireland) which consists of a chamber buried deep beneath the earth under alternating layers of organic materials. Fringe archaeology aside, Griepink's work speaks of the importance of bringing earth back as a centre of our processes, both internally, in the personal and the local, as well as externally in politics, ecologies and our collectivity."

Research image for S T O N E O R G Y.

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Photos by: Bas Czerwinski + Jasper Griepink
Textile advice: Niki Milioni
Production Intern: Juul van Meijel

"S T O N E O R G Y"
Concept: Venus Jasper
Performed with Giek_1, music with Giek_1

Garage Rotterdam, Mondriaan Fonds
CBK Rotterdam, Fonds Kwadraat

Other works on photos:
Kimono by Annie Ratti
Painting by Christine Ödlund