Playing Field of Identities
Mike Bourscheid (b. Esch-sur-Alzette, Luxembourg, 1984; lives and works in Vancouver, Canada) designs and manufactures multilayered and symbolically fraught costumes and sculptures that figure prominently in his sprawling installations, videos, and performances. In 2017, Bourscheid caused a stir with the Idealverein he conceived for the Luxembourg pavilion at the Venice Biennale. The costumes and objects he tailors, molds, forges, and carves for his protagonists suit them as though they had never worn anything else. Cowboy boots, leather aprons, and bodices tell stories, point to conventional roles the wearers might be playing and their place in history. But are accessories enough to transform a performer into a princess, a cowboy, a father? Bourscheid uses art to probe interpersonal relationships. His humorous works play with roles and identities, bringing a mischievous yet unmistakably urgent challenge to the ideas of character, manhood, physique, and attire: how expressive are they in fact, how reliable are our interpretations of them?
The publication Pisces and Capricorns is published on the occasion of Bourscheid's first solo exhibition in the German-speaking world, which was shown at the Kunstpalais in Erlangen and subsequently at the Heidelberger Kunstverein. His latest, very personal work Agnes is published here for the first time. The texts were written by Amely Deiss, Mitch Speed and Frédéric Schwilden.