Something Baroque
Ausstellungsraum Made in Balmoral, Bad Ems 2013

Site-specific Installation
Digital print on Blueback paper, archival pigment prints, mirrorfoil, cardboard, rubber, featherboa, plaster, mirror, tape, glove

For the exhibition space, "Made in Balmoral," Astrid Busch created a new site-specific artwork, titled "Something Baroque." With this installation, she reacts not only to the qualities of gallery itself, but also to the town of Bad Ems as an environment. She uses both settings as partners in dialogue.
Her installation, "Something Baroque," plays with the slippery line between found reality and illusion. As the title suggests, baroque elements can be found here and there throughout the piece. However, it quickly becomes clear that this is only one level of many. Astrid Busch combines several images taken from various sites into a larger whole; she lays different levels on top of each other.
In her carefully composed images, space is a mixture of styles from different eras. Old meets new, such as where a crumbling wall in the rear building of the former Hotel Balzer encounters a blue yoga mat, perhaps a reference to the present with its health craze and cult of the body. Real opposes unreal, tangible meets reproduction, illusion challenges reality.
This mix of different eras is something that is also evident when looking at the cityscape of Bad Ems. Astrid Busch's work contains various references and remarks on the town of Bad Ems, which is currently, for the time of the residency, her living environment.
Her photographs do not simply hang on the wall, but become part of the architecture, and continue into the real space. The images take on a three-dimensional shape. They expand and change the exhibition space. As a viewer, we are drawn into an interplay of different levels of reality, becoming ourselves part of the whole scenery.
Next to the wall-sized photograph, the viewer will find two more photo-objects in the installation. The structure of the materials used in these pieces looks deceptively real. One may ask themself, “Are these real photos or at least real materials? What came first?” For example, the footprint on the cardboard within the photograph confuses perception when one later finds the real footprint on the floor. A mind spiral between reality and illusion is set in motion.
Astrid Busch creates with her installation work a coherent overall picture, both formally and conceptually. Narrative elements are initiated, but these are not specifically defined, leaving us as viewers to negotiate our own chains of association. Real and fictitious spaces connect to new situations and stories.

Katrin Vattes M.A. Künstlerhaus Schloss Balmoral