EPISODE 1: STEPHEN SHEEHAN

EPISODE 1: STEPHEN SHEEHAN

4 December until 9 December 2014
Griesbadgalerie, Ulm (link)

Actions, videos and installation by Stephen Sheehan (link)
Curator and project management: Tommi Brem

Cover image: Stephen Sheehan digging a hole.

Stephen Sheehan visited Ulm for his first German exhibition in December 2014. He pitched his tent at the gallery, using it as a base for his actions which happened all around town. These actions were documented, sometimes “souvenirs” were taken back to the gallery to be exhibited there. Also on display was documentation from previous actions, most of which had taken place in the UK.

Sheehan’s actions are not made for an audience, even if they happen in a public space, where, inevitably, an audience is present. The image above shows the work “Cocoon”. Stephen lay down on the floor on a central square, covered himself with a white sheet we borrowed from a nearby hotel and just stayed there, unmoving, for an hour. People were disturbed. The police was called. An ambulance arrived. Why? Sheehan noticed that when under a white sheet, the day seems bright and calm, even on a cloudy day in the middle of the city.

Another day was spent on the roof of the Stadthaus, right on the minster square. The action “stone & wood” was executed. Stephen hits a piece of wood with a stone. Leaving a mark, like our existence. One person abandoned his friends and his Glühwein on the christmas market below, climbed three flights of stairs to see what was going on.

One night, Sheehan “borrowed” a bunch of paving stones from a construction site. We photographed him doing it and the next day he returned to the site, posting photos of his nightly action above the pile of remaining paving stones.

The action “Challenging a Brick” (video below, recorded in Liverpool in 2012) was executed in the main pedestrian area, as well.