Ruach not Rauch

Commissioned Artwork for Werkleitz Festival 
Held in Dessau, Germany for the 100 year anniversary of the Bauhaus
May 25 - June 9, 2019

Site Specific Installation between two sites:
Ruined Wind Tunnel at the former Junkers Factory Complex
and Air shafts of the Ruined Mausoleum of the Askania Royal Family

Wood, aluminum, security cameras, smoke machine, glycol vapor,stage lights,
electronics, software, poster, industrial fan, anomometer, and hotspot internet boxes

“Ruach not Rauch” is artwork consisting of an air ventilation system that breathes a second life (neues leben ein hauchen) into two buildings in Dessau at once.The Mausoleum of the Dukes of Anhalt and the large-scale wind tunnel at the Junkers factory were both designed by Hugo Junkers. They are relinked through a single current of air.

The wind tunnel was appropriated by the Nazi’s and used to develop military aircraft during  WWII. The Mausoleum incorporated some of the first modern ventilation systems that ensured air quality. Both were destroyed by allied bombing.

By restoring functionality to each of these buildings their historical legacies also are brought to participate in the present. They imply the destructive and vital capacities of technologies. This ambivalence is conveyed in the title Ruach not Rauch.

Ruach is the Hebrew word for the primordial breath of God that initiated creation in Genesis. Rauch is the German word for smoke. The transliterated words are separated only by a switching of vowels— the letters most associated spirit as the breathiest of sounds as in the torah where they are omitted to breath life into the text when read.