Gustav Hellberg

Obstruction 2010-2015

13.0 x 13.0 x 2.7 m
Aluminium, electrical motors and electronic controls, galvanised steel, painted steel, wood.

In 2013 Obstruction had been shown in many various venues, indoors as well as out doors.

Obstruction is made out of standard automatic road barriers. The barriers are connected to a central control unit, which randomly regulates the opening and closing of the barrier arms. Thus the barrier’s opening and closing pattern is in constant change, leading to a constant variation of area access. Sometimes adjacent barriers will open simultaneously, allowing easy walk-through access. At other times the opening of barriers create a slow, complicated, or no walk-through situation.

Obstruction is a project that narrates situations of physical and psychological impediments that we meet on our way through life. It creates a direct physical interaction with a participant and leaves the viewer with a continuously changing image. Primarily, in its immediate and obvious perception, the artwork deals with different levels of demarcation, as it investigates people’s habits of dividing and defining different areas, where blocking or allowing another’s access is a demonstration of power. At the same time the artwork’s unpredictable technical structure creates a metaphorical setting referencing personal and existential development. Different and unforeseeable altering situations are constantly inflicting on our lives.

Locations: Stortorget, Malmö, Hamish Morrison Galerie, Berlin, Stadtgalerie Kiel, Röda Sten Konsthall, Gotheburg, EMAF, Osnabrück, Stadsmuseet Stockholm and Kunst-Kraft-Werk, Leipzig.

The making of Obstruction has been possible with generous support from
Konstnärsnämnden (The Swedish Arts Grant Committee).