A Tale of A Tub

Temptation or Dr. De Clérambault (drapery studies)
February 9–26, 2017

C.o.C.A. Commission 2016
Curated by Nathalie Hartjes

Lotte Reimann is the seventh recipient of the annual C.o.C.A. Commission for artists. In recent months Reimann created a new body of work that will be displayed in the cellar of the bathhouse of the Justus van Effen Complex.

In Temptation or Dr. De Clérambault (drapery studies) Reimann explores power structures and taboos through a collection of found images that she intertwines with fictionalised diary entries from various individuals. The French pathological psychiatrist Gaëtan Gatian de Clérambault forms the basis of a narrative that starts with the arrest of an early 20th-century silk fetishist, and leads past the French colonial era to the recent attacks in Paris. Then briefly enters the online meeting platforms of hidden fetish communities, and also draws Reimann’s own research into a parallel world. Conventions and strategies of concealment and disclosure form the red thread in a group of images that differ from the archive of De Clérambault—who as an amateur anthropologist obsessively documented the traditional full-body garments of Moroccan women. The images contrast with contemporary and historical images snatched from the internet; the iconic image of a patient with elephantiasis; recommended burqas on vending site Ali-express; wearable technology; or a camouflaged armoured vehicle.

Temptation or Dr. De Clérambault (drapery studies) is driven by a fascination with the invisible, or that which is hidden from sight, where the question of who has agency over ‘the image’ is central to a series of thoughts, questions and doubts. Fact and fiction fuse in the hands of Reimann, where they turn into a quasi-biographical document which explores changing social and political norms around physicality, sexuality, and ownership.