Domus online / 3 January 2011 / by Angelique Campens

On first sight, "Built on Promises" gives an impression similar to that which you might get if you had just entered a show that was already finished, where the institution had started to dismantle the exhibition, or perhaps, if you had just walked out onto the empty stage set of a play.

The exhibition walls that serve as parts of the installation are stacked against the wall of the building, or on the floor. The photographs that are spread throughout the space, on the walls and on the component parts of the installation, are documents of that initial installation, depicting the model and the actual process of installation – elements that would not otherwise be visible to the visitor. The visitor sees the show through the eyes of the photographer. The photograph creates a relationship between past and present, by freezing a single reflection in time.

The project is a collaboration between the architect Matthias Ballestrem and the artist Anton Burdakov for Program – a space in Berlin that tests the disciplinary boundaries of architecture through a number of collaborations with different fields. The show "Built on Promises" questions the relation and/or the distance between the experience and the image. "How does the world of the sensible transmute into the second dimension?"

It allows us to think about perception, about what is real and what is image, by showing the documentation of a ("secondary") show that was only made for the purpose of enabling the actual show – a show designed to explore the memory of an exhibition.