Eva Kot’átková. The Diary of a Stomach

28 Apr 2017 – 24 Jun 2017

Meyer Riegger Berlin

Berlin, Germany


Travel Information

  • U6 Kochstrasse

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from The Diary of a Stomach:

Friday, the early hours of the morning
The arrival of new things. As usual I have no idea of their size, number or shape. They drop here at irregular intervals. It isn’t a terribly considerate way of dealing with things. The new arrivals bump into those that have been lying here some time. I have no influence even on this. Then there’s an attempt to identify and record. What if there was an inspection? They are sorted into different piles. Satisfactory, partly usable, interesting but useless and harmful. The harmful ones go straight into quarantine. Negligence could have fatal consequences.

Sunday evening in the dark
A thorough inventory of things. A tasting. I make holes in some things and dismantle others. Some things must be completely crushed, it’s the only way of working meaningfully with them. Generally speaking it’s always best to reduce the volume first. I press and divide. I cut. I shape and crumple. I break things down into form and structure. I reduce. And yet I have no scissors, knives or presses.

Tuesday afternoon
I’m waiting. So far empty. It’s not pleasant working on empty. Even worse is the feeling of loneliness. Darkness and silence. If I were a machine I would have to seize up. It seems that nobody is listening to my loud protests. I need a ventriloquist, a belly-talker.

Wednesday morning
Something arrives at last. First a shoe. Worn. Then a table leg. Even though there’s a leg and a shoe, they wouldn’t really fit together. Several empty packages. A piece of some animal or other. It’s difficult to say what it was. Part of a wire – watch out for the sharp end! Fruit in the process of decomposition. A pencil with teeth marks, a nail, a cup. A moment’s pause. And then quickly, one after the other: a rag, the skeleton of a fish, a stone, a heap of shredded documents – at least there’ll be something to read while waiting, I say to myself, part of a pair of spectacles, a plastic bag with a hole in it, a blurred children’s painting, hay from the cage of a rodent, a few peas, hair and ….

Wednesday after sundown
Havoc. A mass of rotting junk. The doors only closed a moment ago ... repairs – you could hardly close them, I had to force them shut, there’s so many things here. There’s nowhere to store things, the sorting plant is overwhelmed. There’s nothing for it but to clear out the damage. Get rid of all the useless stuff if at all possible. Clean up thoroughly.

Thursday, before dawn
Nausea. Nausea from overeating. I lock the door. Prevent anything arriving. Closed due to illness.


Friday, late afternoon:
The stomach is open. Hands help remove the things trapped inside.
Some are damaged, strangely crooked, others almost unrecognisable.
Darkness and damp have left their mark.
Only the skeletons remain of some things, the stomach took everything from them it needed. In others it bit a hole or embroidered a new hem.
Only cuttings remained from books, the basic silhouettes of objects.
A stomach database is built into the space.
A collection of objects and trophies that the stomach has received during its life.
The objects are getting used to the light and their newly acquired independence.
They are getting used to a new life after escaping from the trap.
They are inhabiting the space, spreading out across the floor, and occupying the walls and corners.
They are slowly becoming accustomed to the attention of the surroundings.
The operation has ended. Further moves are no longer planned.
The exhibition can begin.

Exhibiting artists

Eva Kotátková


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