Mette Sterre – Vicious Circle Disco
How do we navigate in a world that seems to be on the verge of collapse? In her latest work, Mette Sterre (1983) reflects on how individuals could deal with this situation. Where can you still find a sense of togetherness and inspiration, and how do you stay positive in a world that feels more vulnerable than ever before? This paradox and ‘balancing act’ have been the starting point for the exhibition Vicious Circle Disco, Mette Sterre's first solo museum exhibition with new work that can be visited from 25 June to 17 September 2023 in CODA Museum Apeldoorn.
Mette Sterre creates a surrealistic roller disco in CODA. A swirling place full of danger, with its ups and downs, the merging of people, speed, and music; a world where nothing seems stable and everything is spinning. The title of the exhibition not only refers to this infinite spinning of the world, but also to the malignant undercurrent in a crumbling world.
Sterre is interested in ancient and contemporary myths and sagas and how they live on in people and their stories. The roller disco Multidance in the Matenhal in Apeldoorn is an example. Here many people from Apeldoorn had parties in the 1980s and 1990s. Another point of reference for the exhibition is Xanadu, a cult film in which a poor artist is kissed by a muse who inspires him to open a roller skate disco. Over the centuries muses are often depicted in art as women who merely serve as instruments for men. From a feminist and queer perspective Mette Sterre gives her own interpretation of what a muse could be today.
Another important element in Mette Sterre’s work are the sculptural open wounds that refer to the wounds and scars that roller skating can cause. A wound has many other meanings for Sterre. It serves as a protective layer, as a ‘document’ of stories, but a wound is also a portal to another world. This in-between space is an intriguing place for Sterre.
Mette Sterre's work is not unambiguous or easily defined. She works on the border between performance, installation, digital techniques, sculpture, and body masks, with an artistic span that almost seems infinite. Entering the exhibition is like taking a glimpse into the processes of her mind; a simultaneously unpredictable and sensory experience. Her working method results in swirling installations full of hybrid creatures that are made of both organic and artificial materials such as expanding foam, inflatable figures, or textiles.
Mette Sterre studied at the Willem de Kooning Academy in Rotterdam and at Central Saint Martins in London. She was a resident at the Rijksakademie in Amsterdam, and her work has been showcased in various exhibitions and art institutions, including Manifesta 14, the Watermill Center in New York, and Kunsthal KAdE in Amersfoort.