Today we go #InDetail with David Claerbout’s, Olympia (Nothing Romantic), 2017
This work on paper is related to the film ‘Olympia (the real time disintegration into ruins of the Berlin Olympic stadium over the course of a thousand years),’ in which David Claerbout meticulously reproduced a parallel, virtual world centered on a reconstruction of Berlin’s Olympic stadium.
Documenting the passage of time, David Claerbout’s mixed media work captures a single moment of the slow decay of time brought upon by natural elements.
The original stadium was constructed during the Third Reich with its claim to a thousand years of dominance. Through the film, David Claerbout juxtaposes the decline of an ideological construct over time with the biological timescale of nature and the life expectancy of a human being. Depicted in the film and work on paper is an exact replica of the stadium and its environs; every stone, tree, weed, etc. corresponds with the actual location of the structure in Berlin, but with one very important exception – it is a landscape devoid of people and human intervention. Throughout the film, utilizing similar technology to that used in the engineering of video games, nature takes its course in real-time, affected by the real atmospheric conditions unfolding around the stadium in Berlin.
David Claerbout, Olympia (Nothing Romantic), 2017, inkjet print, collage, tape, washed ink, acrylic paint, felt pen and pencil on cardboard, paper: 31 1/2 x 47 1/4 inches