© Karl Van Welden



Within the cycle United Planets, the MARS series focuses on human resistance against great physical forces. The series started with IMAGES FOR MARS I, a video work in which two soldiers of the Belgian army slowly lean towards each other, their feet held in a layer of concrete. The source of inspiration for the performance MARS II is our view on catastrophes. MARS II investigates the impact of a rain of ash on music, and on the pianist performing the music. In the video work IMAGES FOR MARS II the artist investigates the effect of a disaster on the human body. People in a state of carelessness until a dark ash rain falls upon them, turning their idyll into a catastrophe. Or how a blissful moment becomes a scene of charred bodies on a patch of scorched earth.

The choreography and movements are inspired by archaeological finds from Pompeii and Herculaneum, which literally show the positions of bodies at the moment of a catastrophe. After the eruption of the Vesuvius volcano, its victims were enclosed by ashes. In time, the bodies disintegrated while the ash surrounding them solidified, creating cavities. Italian archaeologist Giuseppe Fiorelli filled these cavities with plaster, creating a very precise image of the victims of this natural disaster. They remind us of the marble figures on medieval tombs. Sleeping beauties and tormented bodies, which reflect the Eros and the Thanatos of our relationship with the end.


video work
Duration: 28 min.