'On Haptics', 2015, installation
Born Aachen (DE), 1981
For his installations and films Johann Arens reworks public spaces with sculptural interventions. These on-site installations are seamlessly integrated into everyday work environments such as learning centres, offices and community spaces. To survey the utilitarian value and social function of sculptures, Arens incorporates cinematic codes, digital formatting and fundamental physical perception mechanisms. This is exemplified by contrasting the restriction on touching artworks in museums to the omnipresence of touchscreen interfaces.
Tactility is also the point of departure for Arens’ collaboration with Actief Computer Centrum (Active Computer Center). This center in the west of Amsterdam provides computer and tablet lessons to all. During RijksakademieOPEN 2015 furniture, appliances and other everyday objects from the centre will be exchanged for a series of screen-based sculptures. The combination of sites embodies a new dialogue between two wildly different institutions and might unveil underlying similarities.