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Mortal Combat

2022


24 Amazon Kindle Fire 7 tablets, mounted onto a steel frame.

installation view from the solo exhibition Performance anxiety at Babel Visningsrom 


Mortal Combat, a play on the video game title of the same name, critiques practices of compulsive list-making and neoliberal productivity drives. The work presents a way in which the visitor can ‘read’ books from a definitive '100 Books to Read Before You Die' checklist through the speedreading application Spreeder. Each of the 100 books are delivered one word at a time at the application’s highest setting of 5000 words per minute, a speed at which practitioners of speedreading claim to be able to be able to read at. The 24 kindles contain between one and five books each, streaming out at the viewer in a loop. The text is barely legible at this speed, a ghost image.

The use of Amazon eReaders as device comments upon the digitisation of reading, as the form self-reflectively critiques itself. The kindles are mounted on a purpose built octagonal frame, surrounding the viewer in a panopticon, with cabling used to it's full sculptural potential.


Supported by Billedkunstnernes Vederlagsfond, Norsk Kulturrådet and Bergen Kommune .


photos: Susann Jamtøy