Art in corona times 56. Ingrid Rollema, Blinded by the Light; PIP Den Haag, The Hague

Vividly i remember the swarming locusts bumping into my sweating body.

The gluttonous insects were a disaster for the local famers, and, sticking with thorny legs to my shirt, they looked like panicking monstrous aliens, both defiant and afraid.

Seeing them in bright sunlight, they nevertheless also bore this aura of insatiable gluttony, of mass hysteria and of a robotic mind-set focused on bringing the world to the brink of disaster.

In the mean time birds were feasting on them, turning disaster into profit.

Artist Ingrid Rollema (1953) has made bronze sculptures of the voracious beasts.

She has upsized them and made them actors in a shadow play at PIP Den Haag .

The nastiness of their aura has now been enlarged and shaped into bedevilling shadows that accompany them.

The shadows, although fixed, seem to move because of the lighting, and have a life of their own, as auras and reputations have.

As a visitor you stand in the middle of the theatre as part of the cast, surrounded by these shadows, who look more real and alive than the sculptures, until a flash of lightning brings an end to it all and leaves everything in the dark.

Away are all ideas and haunting shapes.

What have you seen and how real was it?

You can discuss it all with the artist who will welcome you with a drink in the safest of circumstances regarding covid-19; only one visitor per 30 minutes is allowed and the space is well ventilated.

She has kept advertising the show as low-profile as possible, to make sure only the really interested people are visiting and that no difficult situations with queuing will occur.

The experience itself lasts some eight minutes.

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© Villa Next Door 2021

Contents of all photographs courtesy to Ingrid Rollema and PIP, Den Haag

Bertus Pieters