(un)gated – body fences and graphics

Contribution by Julie August in the publication HAUT – Shell, Organ, Archive for the exhibition at ZAK – Zentrum für Aktuelle Kunst / Zitadelle Spandau

Ina Geißler is interested in the boundaries in the in- terpersonal. In her installative work (un)gated (2023), in which three-dimensional cut-outs and techniques of visual poetry mix, fence structures that enclose themselves become objects that hang freely in space and are aesthetically pleasing – subtly also posing the question of inclusion and exclusion. The objects cre- ated from foam are hybrid artifacts between portable sculpture and cage, and thus oscillate in content between protection and restriction of freedom.

In this way, they also make reference to the fact that the Spandau Citadel was formerly also used as a prison.
“My walkable fence objects are about the mediation between inside and outside, about rigid demarca- tion and soft boundaries. With different gaits be- tween imprisonment, freedom, border loss and re- latedness, which are expressed in linguistic phrases such as ― ‘Not being able to get out of one’s skin’ ―‘Going out of one’s skin’―‘Feeling comfortable in one’s own skin’, they invite the viewers* to ‘experi- ence’ the different parameters ‘on one’s own skin’ in the body fences,” says Ina Geißler.
The artist combines word, image and space in paper works and spatial cut-outs, in which the presence of the respective reverse side plays a special role. The starting point for her works on paper are pho- tographs of transitional areas such as stairwells, fences, balconies and windows. From these she develops an abstract pictorial world of large-format paintings, in which seemingly infinite grid structures interweave with illusionistic spheres, foreground with background.

(un)gated, 2023