Posts Tagged ‘ jenny holzer ’

042: Jenny Holzer Part 2

I was talking about Jenny Holzer before but didn’t go further, sorry about that. Jenny Holzer experiments with projections and surfaces. She projected her work on different surfaces such as buildings, water, interior objects. She creates a new environment in reading experience. As I did my research and wrote in my research paper:

Jenny Holzer, an artist who came with the idea of leaving a lasting impression using types and projection on buildings. By using a short, powerful sentences, her writing has become we known, for example: ABUSE OF POWER COMES AS NO SURPRISE or MONEY CREATES TASTE. Her work does not only convey the meaning by types but it is also considered to transform into images. But this idea could not be clarified because it depends on individual perception.

In addition, Holzer has experimented with other surfaces such as mountainsides and water. With the text scrolls, from the bottom to the top of the projection site. ‘Depending on the background, the text can be broken into word fragments that defy any normal reading process’ (Dinkla 2006 p.25). For example, when she projected her work on the building, the projected text molds itself in the architecture forms, clinging to the round columns, while remaining intact and legible. Holzer’s texts consist of statements, usually political or maral nature, that appeal directly to emotion. The projection of her texts on the rough and interrupted surfaces suggests a questioning of whether it is possible to convey messages using words when they are not in perfect structure. However these texts are presented in an imperfect way but they actually interact to the viewers by forcing them to try to collect texts as complete sentences. ‘Holzer is not interested in deconstructing the words, but in making the montage into something that can be experienced in its temporal dimension during the act of reading’ (Dinkla 2006 p.27). Her provoked texts interact with the surface and their surrounds, which create a narrative and emotion through visual projection. ‘Poet Henri Cole aptly pinpoints how Holzer’s language-based work operates to offer “the experience of reading, where self-forgetfulness brings about recognition of the self” (Smith 2008 p.27).

Furthermore, the idea of ‘bathing in the light of language’ is experienced in indoor projections. It is only about the audience readings of text but also audiences get to absorb text, focusing word by word, line by line, to analise images and meanings. Her interest between visual and language began when she was a painter. ‘As Holzer explains “I came to language because I wanted to be explicit about things, but didn’t want to be social realist painter. I had been an abstract painter and that was the painting that I loved, and that I could do. It’s not that I thought that one was better than the other, but for some reason I couldn’t become a figurative painter. I wanted to be explicit about things, and it became clear that only other way for me to do it was to use language. People can understand you when you say or write something” (Simon 2008 p.21).


Dinkla, S. (2006), Jenny Holzer: I Can’t Tell You, Ostfildern: Hatje Cantz Verlag

Keller, S., Smith, E. (2008), Jenny Holzer: Protect Protect, Ostfildern: Hatje Cantz Verlag

Here are some images of her work:








024: Jenny Holzer

I found some book on this artist, Jenny Holzer. I find her works quite interesting in terms of presenting and projecting sentences, types in different ways. My favorite ones have to be ones that are projected on building, trees, glasses, and water. Which are actually interesting to see how surfaces/environments can affect the meaning/typographic visual.

I’ll post more about her because I think it’s very useful for my project.