<Read mefirst>


Coldness and Cruelty, Computersand Control share, like Masochism and Modernism, Memory and Microsoft theirinitial letters C&M which sounds similar to CNN or S&M. But what elsedo they have in common?


In this exhibition, I try to mapout the scheme of a site where knowledge and information are produced andmanipulated, shared and exchanged. An abstraction of an interfacial environmentis exported from a computer screen into the actual gallery in order to proposemultiple readings of architecture. A window, some tools, a grid and a commandare layered on the walls and mix with the objects sample, wi. 7/95/opt. l.c. and Read me first.


window, solomon/sade/96functions as a computer window that floats into the floor. Here the actual wallis looked at as a screen. The content of this interface shows the table ofcontents of the book Masochism by GillesDeleuze (Coldness and Cruelty) and Sacher-Masoch (Venus in Furs). A table ofcontents is to the text, what a computer window is to a machine: an interface,a zone that translates, that mediates and bridges heterogeneous systems,people, ideas, technologies etc. at a point where at least two elements join.


If one takes the interface as ananalytical and philosophical category, we can look at language, desire andsexuality as interfaces that allow, regulate or hinder the fluidity of energy.Deleuze's text is a philosophical introduction into the masochistic"order" of Sacher-Masoch's Venus in Furs. It shows how, in the early modern stages ofcapitalist development, structures of desire are produced which"snap" to a libidinal grid that is orchestrated by contracts andtheatrical behavior. For the victim to speak the language of the torturer, withthe torturers hypocrisy, is not just a strategy of the classical masochist, buthas become a modus operandi ofour consumerist and technocratic society that has sexualized most of itsrelationships.


Toolbox,line 10 and grid 3 originate from software environments wherelanguage and graphics are instrumentalized and turned into functional tools.The export and transfer of these user surface elements to the gallery wallsserves to intervene in, and de-substantialize, the architectonic space.Semantic contamination with the content of the window is possible inthis intertextual game.


Sample,wi. 95/opt.c. functions as a proposal for the production of the window95/opt.c. in another material and format. The piece is composed of this windowas a small icon; the frame of this window - a thick, vertical zoomed -in line; and the text, “sample of projection of window95/opt.c. ... Alsoavailable as wallpainting”.


Thewall paintings and Sample, wi. 95/opt.c. invest in the vocabulary ofmodernism and minimalism, however, they reject the earlier metaphysical referencesof these movements. Rather, the works stress the instrumental, functional,psychological, ideological, and disciplinary involvement of geometry,modernism, technology and mass media.


Rainer Ganahl 1996 for ThomasSolomon Garage, Los Angeles


<note>: An open discussion forum on Gilles Deleuze's andSacher Masoch's book is held by me on the internet:http://www.thing.net/thingnyc/



worklist  RainerGanahl


window, solomon/sade/95


32 x 55 1/2 inches

wall paint, certificate of authenticity


grid 3


2.5 cm x 2.5 cm, intervall 26 1/2 inches, extensionunlimited

wall paint, certificate of authenticity


line 10

stroke 2.1 mm, endless

wall paint, certificate of authenticity



15 x 85 cm

wall paint, certificate of authenticity


sample,  wi.7/95/opt. l. c.

157 cm x 120 cm x 5 cm

photographic paper, laminated, wood