Poo-tee-weet? The development of democracy 1800–2016

2022, bone char, cotton, polyurethane, steel, 316 × 489 × 48 cm

The installation is modelled on a real graph showing the turbulent history of democracy in the world from the year 1800. The graph breaks in 2016: the year when the alarming populist tendencies began to be observed around the world and changed our lives as society permanently. It was also a time when a certain debate started in many communities: is the period of the Enlightenment and its legacy still a perfect example to follow by society if it led to so many calamities and massacres? According to Kurt Vonnegut, after a massacre, everything is very quiet, and only the birds have something to say. They say all there is to say about a massacre, “Poo-tee-weet?”.
Such graphs usually contain an arrow that shows in which direction they should be read. In this sculpture, the arrow shows the opposite direction, pointing to the beginning of the line. Evidently, to look to the future, one needs to take the past into consideration.

in cooperation with Kasper Lecnim

text: Aleksy Wójtowicz