Minneapolis. In the Abandoned office suite of the National Purity Soap Factory the compulsions of cleaning and cleansing become art. The artist performs, cleans, and paints with bleaches, soaps, polishes, dirt, wash water, using brooms, rags, and more.
In this twelve day performance, the artist's actions of cleaning and cleansing affect transformational changes of the visual organization of the office space. The work is determined by daily interaction of artist with space, of the influence of viewers, of the working of materials. Floor surfaces are removed, cleaned with the greatest care, some covered with bleach, others have dirt removed, part or whole. Walls, desks, are treated with polishes and creams. For everything removed or cleaned other areas are treated, stained, dressed. As the work progresses, and cleaning becomes more obsessive and extreme, the more extreme the other, the horror and visions of the back rooms.
"The long dark room, with the trough of coal, is the inverted boardroom. Its walls and raised floors, made from reversed carpet, are the skin below the surface, the shit hidden by the plushness of executive suites. It is a warning of the ethics of clean minds, and has elements of concentration camp, with railway tracks outside the building. The crackle of muzak relgious music muzzles the coarse realities of life making the otherwise unpleasant, pleasant."
giles denmark creates