The Imponderable Weight of the Dead, Soll / Ist

Jan Bernstein (DE)

The interaction of chance, mistakes, definitions, dependence, fictions and realities in connection with the person who has invented and built such a sphere, finds itself in the works. All exactness has its borders, deviates in reality from the planned, because the analog world has many variations in its functionality and conversion.

The work The Imponderable Weight of the Dead is based on the difference between setpoint and process values. The difference here means that there is an error, since the setpoint value should deviate as little as possible from the process value. In The Imponderable Weight of the Dead I am concerned with the difference in weight between living weight (setpoint value) and actual weight (process value) – both values are written at the wall. This discrepancy is embodied by stuffed birds, which on the one hand are present in their literal form of life and on the other hand have nothing in common with their actual existence anymore, which can be defined by the representation of the difference in weight.

The Imponderable Weight of the Dead, 2018/Jan Bernstein (DE), Credit: Jan Bernstein

Soll / Ist consists of several statically combined gauge blocks. These so-called gauge blocks are small cuboid blocks of steel for testing and calibrating instruments of measurement and testing equipment. They represent linear measures with a high degree of accuracy. Due to their surface quality, they can be assembled at the ends to any desired length and then adhere together due to their adhesive force. Adding all defined lengths of these blocks results in a target value of the total length. The actual value of this total length is measured separately from a measuring device to approximately +/- 0. 001mm. And their difference, which results from inaccuracies, temperature differences, measuring errors and others, conveys an idea of the desired perfection of product and concept, but in reality remains inaccurate regardless of any precision. The need for measurability and definition in the smallest units has much to do with a human need for control, but also carries a fine aesthetic within it.

Soll / Ist, 2018/Jan Bernstein (DE), Credit: Jan Bernstein