Camera obscura | Lucida - Light in a darkened room.
A new fronton in gilded bas-reliëf over the entrance of “Landfort House”, 18th c. Country estate. An anatomical transparent eye observing "nature" on its left , projecting it upside down to its right. An image about cognition and observation of “the world” and “the other”. . . the external and the internal.
Celebrating the end of several years of extensive restorations on the house, its interior and the surrounding parks and gardens, and finally its opening to the public, Korver was invited by The Landfort Heritage Foundation to design a new artwork for the fronton above the entrance.
But the the eye was first and foremost taken as point of departure and main motif in the new fronton because “looking” and “seeing” has always been an important aspekt of a country estate like this. Looking at ..the garden .. nature . .. the world .. “Reading and interpreting the book of nature” was an important part of life here, a metaphor for the early modern study of the natural sciences from the late 17th century on. The period known as “the Enlightenment”- the years roughly between Descartes and Darwin - was also the heyday of the Dutch country estate or “Buitenplaats”..
This Eye however, is different in almost every aspect. The “iris” has been transformed into a hollow dish containing the eye’s internal anatomy seen sideways. Therefore this eye doesn’t confront the viewer but internalizes the world, observing what’s on the left, projecting it upside down to its right, as that’s the way eye optics work. leaving the rest to interpretations of the mind.
There is some trace of divinity left though, as the hollow iris subtly brings to mind those dark cavities left in the bronze eyes of antique (demi)god statues, having lost at some point their original inlayed iris of iridescent gemstone or coloured glas.
So if this new eye of Landfort house would reflect some aspect of healing .. this just might be because it doesn't look ahead, but turns its attention to what’s living directly by its side.
“Camera Obscura / Lucida” has been finished and gilded in the Amsterdam Studio, and was installed early June 2023.