Decontextualizing environments and questioning social behaviors and our perception of them is the common practice of Slovakian artist Roman Ondák. The artist, who lives and works in Bratislava, is constantly surprising viewers with works that efface the lines between reality and art to such an extent, that many of his works may pass by completely unnoticed.
In many of Ondák’s performances/installations, he uses people as his main element of construct. In Good Feelings in Good Times (2003-2004), the artist formed a queue of 10-20 people outside the Kunstverein in Cologne for half an hour. Many visitors to the museum joined the queue not knowing it was a performance, expecting something to happen in return for the wait. In Measuring the Universe (2009), presented at the MOMA, museum attendants offered to mark the height of exhibition visitors on the gallery walls along with their first name and the date on which the measurement was taken. Another performance that demonstrates Ondak’s use of people is Resistance (2006), where he asked a group of people to come to a public event, where they mingled in the crowd with their shoelaces untied. For the 2009 53rd Venice Bienniale, Ondák brought the outside inside in the most literal sense with the installation titled Loop (2009), where he recreated the shrubs outside that separate the pavilions inside the Czech and Slovak one.
Roman Ondák lives and works in Slovakia. He has shown his work at the MOMA, the Venice Bienniale, the Tate Modern, the Centre Georges Pompidou and P.S.1, among others.
Images provided by the gallery GB Agency
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