The Rest before the Road
with Emilia Kabakov
CATALOGUE NUMBER: 158
Collection of Ilya and Emilia Kabakov
Galleria Continua, San Gimignano, Italy
The installation was a project in public space during the gallery exhibition The Tennis Game II, with Boris Groys, March 25 to May 27, 2001
Galleria Continua Les Moulins, Boissy-le-Châtel, France
Ouverture (Opening), October 21, 2007 to April 6, 2008
A “hitching post” is constructed from three large and old (this is a very important detail) beams and large, but very light, balls are tied to it in three places. It is clear from the overall arrangement that these balls serve as a metaphor for three horses. Next to them are the walls of an ancient castle, below is empty grass; anyone with a memory of the past and even a slight imagination understands what we have in mind here.
But it is impossible to convey the main circumstance on a photograph—you have to be there “outside,” next to the constructed installation. We are talking about the most important “participant” that transforms the stationary installation into a unique kind of performance—a strong and steady wind that “works” constantly—for the castle is located on the top of a hill (that’s why it was decided to do an installation of this type precisely in this place). The big balls rise up into the air because of the wind, bump into one another, bang up against the “hitching post,” and would fly away if they were not firmly secured with thick ropes wrapped around them.
When you stand for a little while and watch this show, then it seems that the horses without riders are ready to rush off on a distant, unknown journey …
CONCEPT OF THE INSTALLATION
In this spot, there is this legend that for 300 years there was an old hitching post (a place where horses were tied so they could rest before a new long journey). This installation is made in memory of those travelers and their horses that have been to this place.