How do you show temporary, site-specific art years later in a RETROSPECTIVE?

Harmen de Hoop re-created works in Rotterdam that were made anonymously and without permission in other cities.

The question is: in what way does a new location and a different context change the meaning of the work?

 

FIRE EXTINGUISHER #14 – DEN HAAG – 1995

 

RETROSPECTIVE (FIRE EXTINGUISHER) – ROTTERDAM – 2018

 

Have things changed since 1995? We are still scared of house fires, burglary, violence. We still have countless insurance policies. Despite that, disaster can still strike at any time. So perhaps placing fire extinguishers in public space is a good idea after all. In 1995 I tried to make it seem like an extra security measure. A passer-by might think that the city council put it there. Even though it was attached so firmly that in the event of an actual fire you’d need to have a set of tools handy. In the year 2018 it seems unlikely that anybody would expect the government to place fire extinguishers in public space. So who placed this fire extinguisher in the playground? Worried parents? Is the fire extinguisher a symbol for the tendency to safeguard us against any risk? It is unclear if in this case it will evoke a feeling of safety, or heighten people’s fears.

 

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