Animal Art – Art With and About Animals S

An intermediate research project by Irene Müller.W
hether Capricorn, wild boar, mouse, fox or deer, all are involved in the art project by Irene Müller. But not only as an object of art, but in this particular case as an interested art audience. There is lively activity, especially in the night hours in the Black Forest. A coming and going of the same visitors who seem to be interested not only in the food in place, but also, above all, in the (animal) art. A deer comes from that and discovers the artwork placed there. It scares your head, goes closer and then disappears again. On the same night it comes again and the procedure repeats itself. It remains standing in front of a painting showing a wild boar. It pauses and looks at the object interested. The situation is similar with two wild boars. They keep coming back to the place in the forest where Irene Müller placed that very work of art. You look and sniff at it, look at it in depth, walk your way and then come again at a later hour. For months, the animals of the forest have been able to visit and examine the one-picture exhibition (in contrast to the situation in a museum). Superwildvision is what Ir
ene Müller calls her project series, which she has carried out so far in the Black Forest, on the outskirts of Stuttgart and at an altitude of more than 2300m in Austria. The ibex in the Zillertal Alps in particular proved to be particularly interested in art. Sup
erwildvision is formally the character of a research project that moves at the intersection of art perception in animals and intermediate design. The ani
mals are recorded by an infrared camera during the duration of a project lasting several months. It is a so-called wild camera, which integrates color into your environment and is equipped with a motion sensor. As soon as an animal
moves in front of the camera, which it begins with the recording. Thus, a
documentation emerges about the tighing of the animals for months. The artist evaluates this footage and extracts film stills from it, which serves as a kind of foressketch for a subsequent implementation on canvas. The painted image thus takes on meaning in multiple ways. On the one hand, it is a „object of view“ for the animalistic art audience and, on the other hand, it creates images in an interaction that relate thematically to what is happening in front of the camera. Cutout and momentary subject, Irene Müller banishes her motifs to the canvas. Unusual image clippings and situations reflect the medium of video that underlies the works. Thus, the work goes through several stages until it finally reaches its final format and appearance at
the end. The exhibitions for the human viewer usually take place in close proximity to the original events. Virtuosic and colorful, light and playful, the animals appear in the pictures-in contrast to the situation under which the original film pictures (usually at night in infrared grey digital images) were created. The American natural knowledge historian Donna Haraway put the relationship between humans and animals in the focus of her scientific work and explored the question of how the two genera influence each other. Aspects of this research can also be found here in Müller’s work. Documentation, observation, evaluation, analysis and interpretation are borrowed processes from the scientific working environment. However, the connection between research and science is not only evident in the case of supergame vision. Together with the artist Diethard Sohn, she developed a method of visually translating this scientific approach and transforming it into object-based landscape markings on the basis of scientific measurement data. Oversitically sized red strips of fabric are installed, composed and photographically documented in the form of markings in the landscape. Through this artistic intervention, the landscape acquires a new visual structure and merges on the basis of the interpretation of the measurement data into a unique aesthetic land art structure. Through this spatial reinterpretation, Müller & Sohn create images of haunting aesthetic relevance.

(Dr. Gabriele Engelhardt, photo artist)