Ghosts of Rob Mulholland
Do you remember the special effects of the franchise “Predator”? Look at the pictures and say – what would you do having met one of these sculptures suddenly in the forest? I’m rather scared to think what I could do in this case, because my voice would have been similar to the sound that is audible only to dogs! Or, perhaps, you will stand in stillness in contradistinction to me… Anyway, it won’t leave you indifferent!
These ghosts represent the installation “Vestige” which belongs to the Scottish sculptor Rob Mulholland. This unusual “art” is located in the woods of Scotland, near the small town of Alloa (though who can call the contemporary art as a usual thing? And is it possible to apply this word to art in general …?). To be more precise, it is installed at David Marshall Lodge Visitors Centre.
According to the author, these figures are some kind of embodiment “a vestige, a faint trace of the past people and communities that once occupied and lived in this space”. They show the unity of man and nature, environment; indicate that we are part of the space. Rob Mulholland was inspired by the history of this place. Visualizing the locals before the First World War, remembering their past, he created these figures as reverberations of that time.
“Vestige” contains a deep philosophical subtext of complex relationship between man and the surrounding world; “visual representation of the alternative space and the passage of time”.
Rob Mulholland:“The figures absorb their environment, reflecting in their surface the daily changes of life in the forest. They create a visual notion of non – space. A void as if they are at one moment part of our world and then as they fade into the forest they become an intangible outline.”
The installation represents 6 mirrored sculptures-silhouettes made of Perspex. Translucent acrylic glass has a property to distort the reflection of light, so there is the effect of partial invisibility. These creepy sculptures reflect trees, shrubs, flowers and herbs, but the silhouettes of humans can be seen very distinctively. The play of light and space makes these figures convex and almost alive, but frightening. So such translucent figures can scare the unprepared person not worse than ghosts.