the adonis depot

Following the present calculations of genetic researchers it appears that the continual disintegration of the Y-chromosome will eventually lead to the disappearance of the human male. Masculine time will be running down in about 125 thousand years. According to the visions of some of these scientists a remedy may come from the creation of an „Adonis Chromosome“, which would ensure the preservation of the male sex. Future generations are advised to reassemble the genes of masculinity „out of the wreckage af the Y-chromosome to construct a compact genetic package“ from these (German news magazine „Der Spiegel“, no. 38/2003).

Susanne Ristows Adonis Depot is a construction of wooden picture-tablets on free-standing racks, assembled so as to create an intimate, almost sacral space, accessible from all sides.

The picture tablets (Russian birch plywood, 15 mm, 190 x 62, resp. 125 x 62 ccm), treated with linseed oil and white oil paint, will picture Adonis motifs, i. e. dead and / or sleeping male bodies. The representations bring to mind the classical depositions (entombment, lamentation, pietá) of the Renaissance and Baroque periods, but they also reflect the fetishization of the male body in contemporary picture-media (photography, film, video).

In addition to the wooden icons stored on the racks, the construction will also be featuring moving pictures, in the form of a animated cartoon film running on several screens at different phases. The film, titled „Displaced Body“, will show a weightless male body in free fall. It will be accompanied by the sound of Nick Caves „The Mercy Seat“ in a version performed by Johnny Cash.

Passing a half-open, transparent curtain, the visitor threads on a soft, cream-coloured carpet. The space he enters resembles a consultation room, storehouse or reservoir, at the same time evoking associations of the paradoxical image of a well-lighted, aired sepulchral chamber.

At the center of the space there will be a table, with a lamp hanging above. Here the visitor is invited to place any of the tablets from the racks as if for a medical treatment. Thus the order of the installation and on the racks will be in constant transformation. The open architectural structure also allows for the visitor to experience the construction from the outside, peeping through the openings in the racks unto the interior room.

The Adonis Depot may be built to varying sizes. In accordance with the tradition of sacral as well as profane shrines, it will allow for an ever increasing number of exhibited materials, be these films, objects, or other devotionalia.