David Horvitz, A Mountain / A Sea, 2018. Marble cube broken into pieces; book on a shelf; Marble cube 120 x 120 cm, Dimensions variable.
A Mountain / A Sea is one of two elements of an installation that Horvitz created for the 4th edition of the Henraux Foundation Prize, which took place in the historic Henraux sawmmill in Querceta. Horvitz was among three artists that won the prize.
The work consists of a marble cube that has been broken into pieces, which the public is invited to take home. Leaving only a signature, the viewers are meant to engage in an action that results in a distributed sculpture, that remains whole despite its physical disintegration and disappearance.
“Marble sculpture has this feeling of permanence. But nothing is permanent. Marble is actually just a leftover of an ocean, compressed over time. You can think of marble, and think of mountains. Or you can think of the sea, all the marine life that has metamorphasized into marble. The etymology of “marble”, from Greek, means “to shine”. This obviously refers to the shiny quality of the stone. But it could also refer to the star light, to the stars, where all matter was created.
I wanted to make something that was fragile, not stable. I wanted to make something that was about falling apart, or disappearing. I could not imagine making anything representational. The idea is to take an existing block of marble found in the quarry on top of the mountain. And to reduce this to fragments, little pieces, all the size of something you can pick up in your hand. These fragments would be presented together, maybe looking like an earth work pile of rocks. And then in the exhibition, I want the people who are there can take a piece from the pile, so that it slowly disappears. I was thinking about the Felix Gonzales Torres piles of candy, and how that work depletes away… But for what I want to do, I actually don’t imagine the sculpture completely disappearing. It only disappears from here, from this place. I see it as a distributed sculpture made of marble. It still exists, it just exists across a space. Maybe it’s mostly in the town of where it is first shown. Or maybe it spreads out to larger distances. But I want to imagine that it still exists as whole, just scattered. Like a stone found in a river or on the beach, which once was a giant mountain, then travels in your pocket, on an airplane, and ends up on your desk. The mountain is still there.”
– David Horvitz