Kloster St. Marienberg and County Hall of Helmstedt
5th May – 18th June 2006
Welcome by Domina Mechthild von Veltheim
Opening speach by Inge Mahn
In 2005, I held the Helmstedt district's residency scholarship for contemporary art at the St. Marienberg monastery in Helmstedt for six months. During this time, several site-specific works were created. To the artwork 'Crowd crystals'
Helmstedt is a small town near the former inner-German border. The monastery of St. Marienberg dates back to the 12th century and houses workshops for paramentics and textile restoration.
I was accompanied above all by "Crowds and Power" by Elias Canetti.
"Crowd crystals are the small, rigid groups of men, strictly delimited and of great constancy, which serve to precipitate crowds. Their structure is such that they can be comprehended and taken in at a glance. Their unity is more important than their size. [...] Its members are trained in both action and faith. They may be allotted different parts, as an orchestra, but they must appear as a unit. [...] Even when they appear separately, people always think of the rigid unit to which they belong, the monastery or the regiment. [...] But the crystal is all limits: everyone belonging to it constitutes part of its boundary [...]."
Elias Canetti, Crowds and Power, Middlesex,1973, pp. 85f.