Onderzoek omtrent het actuele esthetische ideaal / Research about the Actual Estheatic Ideal, 1976
During the exhibition Theory, Information and Practice in Ghent, Hugo Roelandt shows an installation of 16 large nude photographs that show the front and back of 8 persons. At the same time an opinion poll is distributed about “the actual aesthetic human physical ideal”. Roelandt wants to demonstrate that the aesthetic ideal of Michelangelo is obsolete and wants to create a new ideal.
For his performance he places five figures in a situated created by Michelangelo. According to that artist these figures took on the perfect aesthetic pose, what Roelandt refutes with a different reality. He let’s his performers move from one side of the hall to the other in order to disrupt the static composition.
‘Research about the actual aesthetic ideal’ is a critique on the idealforms of the body imposed on us by the media. The spectators can compose their ideal man / woman on the basis of the large nude photographs showing people with different body proportions, e.g. thick or skinny buttocks etc.
(Abstracts from Hugo Roelandt: Let's Expand The Sky, red. Mark Holthof, Occasional Papers, London, 2016)