Defining the dancing drops of milk | 1999

Rheine, Museum Kloster Bentlage

“Die Bestimmung der tanzenden Milchtropfen” (Defining the dancing drops of milk) is an installation placed very close to the original 1499 skull shrine in the monastery of Bentlage. It is the contemporary translation of this 500 year old relic that is relevant for artistic analysis, not its historical significance. Ten revolving disco balls, installed on the central axis of the space, plunged the dark-ened exhibition gallery into a rotating sea of light, in which it becomes increasingly difficult to get one’s bearings. Part of this effect is that hundreds of points of light pass over a showcase placed centrally in the space, and measuring 320 cm (l) by 60 cm (w) by 60 cm (h). The panes of glass are half-silvered, so that on closer examination it is possible to see original X-ray films of human genetic DNA fingerprints in the low lighting of the showcase. Two notes on the title: The 1499 Bentlage skull shrine contains saints’ bones and relics of Christ, and also two relics of Mary: a hair of the Virgin Mary and a stone with an imprint of a drop of her mother’s milk. According to a recent scientific report, Japanese genetics researchers have successfully cloned two calves produced from (mammary gland cells) the milk of a Holstein cow.

< back to overview