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Jochen Gerz «Mona L.’s Smile Remains Unanswered»
Jochen Gerz, «Mona L.’s Smile Remains Unanswered», 1978 – 1979

 Jochen Gerz
«Mona L.’s Smile Remains Unanswered»

With a title referring to the irrevocable separation between picture and viewer, this work consists of two parts linked by 17 metres of plastic rope stretched 60 cm above the floor. On one side of the room is a rough-hewn wooden pole, 2.20 m in height, around which the rope revolves. Hanging from the pole are a rifle dating from World War I and a copy of sculptor Henri Gaudier-Brzeska's Vorticist manifestos. A tape recording of a male and female voice plays in an endless loop at the foot of the pole. On the other side of the room is a round wooden disk, 5.30 m in diameter, slowly revolving on an invisible turntable. On top of the disk is a monitor, opposite it a tripod-mounted video camera. 5 cm above the disk, two small wooden chairs dangle from threads. The direct recording of the monitor image by the camera produces feedback. 'Mona L.'s smile remains unanswered' (#3 of his 'Kulchur Pieces') is the only work by Jochen Gerz possessing this video-specific effect.