26 January 2020 - 22 February 2020
Opening: Sunday 26 January 16:00 – 18:00
The Transformation Series, shown at Bradwolff Projects over the past six months, concludes with the last episode of the triptych. After the exhibitions of Hili Greenfeld [Israel] and Sachi Miyachi [Japan], Paul Devens [Netherlands] is the third in the series. The three artists in the Transformation Series were asked to address the historical and social layer of the space of Bradwolff Projects in relation to its architecture and infrastructure. A guiding principle herein is the artistic vocabulary of the artists, which focuses on the interaction between art and architecture, and varies from interventions and architectural interferences to spatial installations and sound.
For the installation ‘Pavilion 4’ at Bradwolff Projects, Devens places multiple speakers in the space and installs curtains in front of the windows. The exhibited sound composition was recorded in Jerusalem 2014 during and after riots broke out: a composition of human voices, busy market noises, people doing their shopping, a stallholder praising his merchandise and then helicopters, the sound of tear gas being launched, grenades, fireworks, screams, after which everyday life is resumed. In bringing these sounds from Jerusalem – removed from their context – into the quiet exhibition space of Bradwolff Projects, the clash of realities is intensified because of the simultaneity. The sound sequence is parallelly programmed to the opening and closing of the curtains in the space. The acoustic quality of the building is addressed by digitally ‘projecting’ the sound composition onto the acoustics of the corners and niches of the space.
The title ‘Pavilion 4’ refers to the idea of the pavilion as an ‘architectonic object’ with no clear function. The pavilion is a romantic invention for reposing and meeting up with one another. The dome-shaped space of Bradwolff Projects has architectural associations with a pavilion. Devens strengthens and weakens this distinctive character by mechanically opening and closing curtains. When the curtains close, viewers are isolated in the interior. The reference to one’s own reality outside has temporarily vanished or is suspended. When the curtains reopen, the density of the sounds decreases once more, and the visitor returns to here and now.
Paul Devens [1965, Maastricht] is the last artist in the Transformation Series. Mainly working with sound and tone as a medium, he uses field research to study the political layers of a space. He interprets sound as a direct reflection of a society that tells us something about what is going on, socially, economically and politically. But tone does a lot more: it can enrapture us, bring up memories, and appeal to our imagination, our thoughts and our emotions.
Devens studied at the Maastricht Academy of Fine Art and continued his education at the Jan van Eyck Academie, also in Maastricht. He works as a visual artist, curator, advisor and teacher at the Academy of Fine Arts & Design. His work has been exhibited in numerous solo exhibitions, including: Les Brasseurs in Liège , bb15 in Linz , The Museum of Fine Art in Split , Z33 in Hasselt  and Diapason Gallery in New York . Group exhibitions in which he has participated include: Ctrl_Alt_Del in Istanbul [2003, 2005, 2007], Kunsthal Charlottenborg in Copenhagen . D-0 ARK Biennial of Bosnia-Herzegovina in Sarajevo , The Jerusalem Show in Jerusalem . He is the cofounder and a member of the artists’ collective Otomax, with which he has been making concerts, performances and exhibitions since 2016.