”Memory does not make films, it makes photographs,” said writer Milan Kundera in his book ”Immortality”. by nature, the photograph is a betrayal and deception of reality, in fact a form of ghost, because the photo is an insubstantial image. it is the rendering of an ideal but is also a spectre or phantom …”and adds to it that rather terrible thing which is there in every photograph: the return of the dead” (Roland Barthes,Camera Lucida).
Simone Decker has, through an eclectic approach to visual art, challenged the foundation of materialism through an interrogation of habits and systems of order. Through art projects and installations such as ”Ghosts” and her giant gum sculptures in ”Chewing in Venice”, she has presented images that are the antithesis of classical composition.
They are in effect,artistic renditions of anti-matter. The exhibition spaces are restructured and then images are projected within it, that play on different levels which betray and deceive our habitual perceptions. There is an ephemerical quality like that found in early twentieth century ”Spirit Photography” where film captured images of the souls or spirits of the departed. the ghosts often appeared a solid ectoplasm in a misty form leaving a mediums mouth.
With regard to Ghosts and Chewing Gum, …”Owing to their organic shapes and their elastic surfaces, these works can be called anti-forms of classical sculptures in the urban space. Here too, Decker is looking for the opposite of the static, the fixed, the permanent, the finished”.
Both these works are challenges to habits of perception where the art is structured around a central emptiness where the real resides, skirting a direct attack on ” the real, yet impossible and unmentionable thing”. The shaping of self-image is viewed from another perspective, an alternative proposal where the tension between the collective and the individual is underwritten by a different form of narrative. Decker’s talent has been to blur and cloud the boundaries between ones history and one’s cultural memory through a multi-disciplined approach to visual art.