Pépé Smit


Degrading #6, 2009




The nature of nature

What is the nature of nature? Is it the magical place where I buried all those dead animals, built tree houses, spent hours on my own, pretending to be an animal myself, at a time when nobody ever asked where I had been? Where I encountered incomprehensible but exiting half rotten dirty books and their weird presentation of the secret world of grown ups? Is it the place I go for a walk on Sunday? Something I would like to view from my hotel room? Or is it a dark place where animals cruelly eat each other? Where the Cynipid wasp lays her eggs inside the brain of a caterpillar that will not die but carries on living, providing the baby wasps with food for a long time. Where large aggressive groups of chimpanzees attack smaller chimpanzee groups to beat them up, rip their baby-chimps apart and eat them. Yes children: that's nature too. A place in which one would rather not get lost, especially not after dark.............



Forever, 2007


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The drawback of Andy Warhol's famous "15 minutes of fame", that would await us all in the media age, is of course the inflation of "fame" itself. Almost daily we are confronted with the ultimate democratization of fame on our television screens. The consumer-viewers are interactively judging shows filled with dilettantes or supposedly upcoming talents that are being fed to them as camera candy. Consequently, the relationship between fame and craftsmanship or artistic talent has been altered significantly: the place where the trick is performed has become more important than the trick itself.......