THE DEN PROJECT
- HANNAH FIRTH
  EN RESIDENCIA EXHIBITION CATALOGUE
  LABORAL CITY OF CULTURE, GIJON, ASTURIAS, SPAIN

 
 


Bermingham and Robinson have built a den in a quiet room nestled at the end of a corridor. I enter the room alone and am immediately ill at ease.  There is something uncanny about this structure.  It bears no resemblance to the piecemeal, scrappy - looking structures that evolve out of an automatic, unquestioning childhood response.  It is far too rigorous in its construction, too ordered and self-conscious.

The den does not appear so much a place of reflection or play.  It is somehow sinister, threatening even.  It reminds me of a bunker, a place in which to hide from a wider, omnipresent menace.

As I navigate the perimeter walls, a photograph reveals itself, casually propped on a shelf.  Some of the scrappy fixtures and fittings are familiar: sofas, tables and worktops; they are scattered and strewn across the room as if abandoned in extreme haste.  The photograph, it seems, is a snapshot of this room before the installation and construction by the artists began.  It reveals the fact that they have gathered up all of the contents and reconfigured them into this island of order.  So what is presented here is a kind of inverse attack: the seeming chaos and spontaneity of the space and its previous inhabitants has been subsumed by a more contained, and ultimately chilling, place.

 


© BERMINGHAM & ROBINSON