Video: Artist Michael Beitz’s Folding House
December 1, 2011
Artist and furniture maker Michael Beitz manipulates everyday objects into surreal pieces of art that expose the underlying anxieties of domesticity. From warped dining tables and knotted sofas to liquidized patio furniture and priapic chairs, Beitz’s work is concerned with the social relationship between object and user and how the latter’s emotional disposition becomes psychoformally tied to the former. Beitz converts aura into mass, displacing feelings of stress, loss, and even libidinal anguish into the objects that give witness to them.
The resultant works are captivating, by turns dark and funny–at times gleeful in their sheer hyperbole. Just watch Beitz’s folding house above where the frame of an ostensibly abandoned or foreclosed home sways from side to side motored by a seated cyclist. The serious undertones of the visuals are offset by the carefree manner with which the house’s walls bump into neighboring homes. While even the most solid foundations, it seems, can be dislodged and ungrounded as easily by personal trauma as economic downturn, the installation also “instigate[s] conversation about the life of the city and the flexibility of possibilities for these doomed structures.” See more of Beitz’s artwork here.