© 2019   Mark Themann - All rights reserved. Reproduction and distribution of any and all images, requires permission by the artist
 

Solvitur Ambulando, 2001

Palais de Tokyo, Paris

 

 

A twenty-day action for five hours daily in the urban area surrounding the Palais de Tokyo.

 

Four hundred participants (passers-by) from the general public received a bouquet of ten flowers, a map with instructions in six languages, with texts by Octavio Paz and Mark Themann. 

 

The map detailed a walk tothirteen sites starting andfinishing at Palais de Tokyo. 

 

At each designated public square, the participant was asked to enact a series of gestures as described below.

Procedure on how to enact "Solvitur Ambulando"

 

/Stage 1

At the table in front of the Palais de Tokyo, you will receive from the artist eleven flowers and a map. Five flowers will be labelled:

IN MEMORY OF THE UNKNOWN SPACE.

Five will be labelled:

IN MEMORY OF THE UNKNOWABLE SPACE.

One flower will remain unlabelled for ecological reasons, as will become clear at the end of your walk.

 

 

 

 

 

 / Stage 2 

With your bouquet of flowers (and with friends or alone) walk from site to site. At the next site (e.g. Place Rochambeau) select an area within ‘Place Rochambeau’ that seems most appropriate to a label on your flowers. Place the labelled flower of your choice into your selection of the site – then pause and recite silently to yourself: Is it all the same if we open our eyes or close them? (Octavio Paz). Leave the flower in the site and walk on to the next site marked on your map. Repeat for all sites until you arrive at site 12, the bridge spanning the Seine ‘Passarelle Debilly’.  

 

 

 

 

 

 

 / Stage 3 

Walk onto the bridge ‘Passarelle Debilly’. Throw your last flower, without a label, into the Seine. Standing above the Seine, silently recite to yourself ‘Reversible’ by Octavio Paz.  

 

 

In space

I am

inside of me

the space

outside of me

the space

nowhere

I am

outside of me

in space

inside

is space

outside of it

nowhere

I am

in space

Octavio Paz )

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

/ Stage 4 

Return to the Palais de Tokyo to the table where you received the flowers. Receive from the artist one flower labelled and signed by the artist,

IN MEMORY OF THE UNKNOWABLE SPACE.