We’ve featured the paintings of German artist Martin Eder before, such as his portraits of female warriors and erotic kitsch. Another notable work of his is an installation known as “Hallucination,” which was shown in the Dimensions Variable exhibition at Berlin’s Galerie Eigen + Art in May 2013. The installation features a massive sculpture (6m x 10m x 10m) made of twisted black metal that appears to hover above the ground prior to impact. Like an ominous void, the object resonates with stillness and terror, unsettling the psyche with its violent yet silent presence.
The press release for “Hallucination” likens the object to Plato’s Cave, an allegory in Western philosophy that centers around the development of cognition and one’s sense of reality. Eder’s structure resembles a cave, a negative cavity that produces tension between abstraction and reality. Its liminal status (not falling, not making contact) makes it an object of infinite reflection; it becomes a symbol of a distant threat while also operating as a source of knowledge. Our physical relationship to the object—standing in a room or a hallway with it, for example—shapes how it manifests itself in our imaginations.