This Is It (1992)
Polyurethane, Cherry, hornbeam and apple wood walking staffs, each with inlaid mahogany and teak veneer, hinge, Ecstasy, glass, sealing wax, foam
178 x 30 cm each
This Is It! suggests the legacy of a rave culture that has evolved into a more solitary search for an ecstatic sublime in the landscape. Based on the tradition of a source of pleasure or power being concealed within an ‘innocent looking’ stick (eg: walking cane flasks or sword sticks) This Is It suggests, perhaps, that three different people can walk together to a particular location in the landscape facilitated by these staffs, open them to reveal their hidden phials, then consume the ecstasy inside in order to chemically heighten their experience of place and each other. The drawing together of a community (of three), a sublime release on a mountainside perhaps, or in the midst of a city at dawn, or in the darkness of a dense forest; a revelation, or epiphany This Is It! Or maybe the materiality of the particular trees (cherry, hornbeam and apple) is significant and This Is It is partly about the acknowledgement of their difference in feel, appearance, fruit, growth, history etc. This is It? So, which one of the three gives the best access to It?!
This Is It is an early example of Adam Chodzko’s interest in the idea of an art object having a form of ‘use value’. As ‘kit’ or ‘prop’, in relationship with the viewer, either directly or through imagination, the artwork has the potential to guide and enable an enhancing of perception by its user. M-path, Mask-Filter, The woods shall rise up in those places where you pause, Ghost, Props for memorising the gravity of mime objects, Deep Above and Thru hole… etc all allude to a similar ‘functionality’. Each suggest that by interacting with this piece of art, as event, and the transformation it catalyses, the viewer will then be able to see ‘better’.
The suggestion of the artwork existing as part of a ritual and magick, of its capacity to reveal a secret technique or ingredient that might catalyse a change in the viewer’s consciousness also appears throughout Chodzko’s practice; from A Plan for a Spell to White Magic to O, you happy roots, branch and mediatrix .
As with works such as Better Scenery and Next Meeting…the location of the base of the staff marks an actual and particular place on the ground but its MDMA catalyses a state of mind which might be altogether elsewhere.
Initially exhibited at Chodzko’s first solo exhibition at Bipasha Ghosh, London (1992), it was later shown in exhibitions such as Zombie Golf, 1995, BANK, London) and Proxigean Tide, Tate St Ives (2008).
Mask Filter (2013)
O, you happy roots, branch and mediatrix (2020)
Secretors (1993 – )
a loose leaf falls between (2013)
A Plan for a Spell (2001)
a way from heaven (2017-2022)
Accretor (no.11: Before we begin…) (2019)
April – May 2000 Arc Ark (2010)
Better Scenery (2000 – )
Deep Above (2016)
I See Through Every Image. (A souvenir for Laarni; A planting template for Belladonna seeds), 2013
Love Space: (A Plan for the Perfect 24 hours) (1997)
Mask Filter (2004)
O, you happy roots, branch and mediatrix [live] (2020)
Synthetic Copse: Our Ash Hospital (2018)
Test Tone for Landscape (2005)
The woods shall rise up in those places where you pause (1995)
White Magic (2005)