For Kai (Southern Cross): Navigation for my little explorer. Esther Kokmeijer

Mini digger, radar reflectors None

In 2020, Esther Kokmeijer spent a summer residency in an abandoned concrete slab factory in Rotterdam with her then four-month-old son, Kai. The residency was an initiative of the If Paradise Is Half As Nice art collective, which resulted in multiple projects that intersect the fields of art and science.

For Kokmeijer, this residency was different from previous ones, as she had to take care of her young infant while working on her art project. To entertain him, she created an enormous, unconventional baby mobile of reflectors that she attached to a crane. The mobile functioned as a compass that simulates the Southern Cross – a group of four bright stars ordered as a cross or kite-like shape in the southern sky. The Southern Cross functions as a navigation tool directing to the South Pole on the Southern hemisphere. Kokmeijer is an expedition guide and photographer on Antarctica, and through this work, she shares her love for this most Southern continent with her son. The lengths of the threads and beams that form the cross-like structure refer to the heights of Kokmeijer and her son separately and together.

For Dearest Y, and as Kai is almost two years old, Kokmeijer creates a reiteration of the same Southern Cross mobile, but this time inside the exhibition space. Using industrial objects such as a mini digger and reflectors to assemble a baby toy in unusual measurements, the artist creatively repurposes the usage of materials and juxtaposes roughness with softness. By that, the work sheds light on how mothers can multifunction and fulfil personal and professional responsibilities simultaneously.

For more info about the IPIHAN project:
This project is kindly supported by DMS (Duivenvoorden machine service)

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