Evoking fables and fairy tales first encountered in childhood, Djurberg & Berg’s second virtual reality work, produced by Acute Art, explores the outcome of what happens when faced with the ultimate choice. Confronting the dichotomy of the light side (good) or the dark side (evil), the viewer gets to choose their own path. But viewer be warned, indecision and backtracking only serves to speed up the evolution of ‘heaven’ or ‘hell’, reaching the point of no return to good or bad, depending on the viewers choice.
As with It Will End in Stars (2018), Djurberg & Berg’s previous VR piece, this immersive narrative features a plethora of Djurberg’s characters created specifically for this work. The entire setting, including the characters and props, are crafted and modelled from clay and digitised through detailed scanning to produce Djurberg’s distinctive style. Captivating the viewer on this narrative tale the work is paired with an original soundtrack composed by Hans Berg.
Nathalie Djurberg and Hans Berg have exhibited widely together, with recent solo shows including The Secret Garden (2016) which toured institutions including the Shanghai 21st Century Minsheng Art Museum, China, the Perth Institute of Contemporary Art, and the Australian Centre for Contemporary Art, Melbourne, and Flickers of Day and Night, held at ARoS Aarhus Kunstmuseum, Denmark (2015). They have participated in group shows including the 53rd Venice Biennale (2009). Born in Lysekil, Sweden, in 1978, Nathalie Djurberg received her MFA from Malmö Art Academy, Sweden in 2002. Hans Berg was born in Rättvik, Sweden in 1978 and is a musician, producer and composer, working mainly with electronic music. Nathalie Djurberg and Hans Berg live and work in Berlin, Germany.
About ’It Will End in Stars’ (2018)
It Will End in Stars (2018) is an immersive virtual reality experience combining Nathalie Djurberg’s distinctive sculpted figures with black and white charcoal drawings, text, and an unsettling soundtrack by Hans Berg.
The work is a continuation of Djuberg’s interest in archetypal landscapes, evoking fairy tales first encountered in childhood. Viewers begin their journey deep in a forest, entering a clearing to discover a wooden cabin. Inside, a wolf sits in front of a glowing fire – the building’s chintz interior undercut by a creeping sense of unease.
Hand-written text, which appears hanging in mid-air, conveys the wolf’s thoughts, merging digital technology with an aesthetic closer to silent cinema.
Painstakingly scanned and animated, Djurberg’s creature is responsive, meeting the viewer’s gaze and responding to their movements. The effect is disconcerting; we are uncomfortably aware of our status as watched intruder.
Around the room, objects become portals into alternate dimensions: a skull becomes a route into a kaleidoscopic environment, while a shadowy enclave of the cabin opens out into a cavernous animated temple.
This dream-like vision ends in a sprawling star-scape, reiterating the mystical, nature of the work and reiterating the landscape’s dream-like nature.
Nathalie Djurberg and Hans Berg collaborate to create psychologically charged works that explore base human desires including jealously, greed, revenge and lust. Their practice combines Djurberg’s distinctive clay animation, which she developed in 2001, with Berg’s hypnotic musical compositions and sound effects, merging cinema, sculpture and performance.
Recent collaborations have also incorporated set pieces and built objectives, creating immersive environments rich in symbolic meaning. Since 2004, the pair have produced transgressive narratives, with works such as We Are Not Two We Are One (2008) and Tiger Licking a Girls’ Butt (2004) presenting grotesque, nightmarish visions.
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