DEFENDER x Gabriel Rolt x Barbara Thumm x Lisette Ros

My work as part of New Viewings / Barbara Thumm Galerie included ‘DEFENDER’, an online exhibition curated by Gabriel Rolt.

Artists: Adam Broomberg, Nik Christensen, Shezad Dawood, Bertien van Manen, Lisette Ros.

why am i doing this? Failure
to keep my work in order so as
to be able to find things
to paint the house
to earn enough money to live on
to reorganize the house so as
to be able to paint the house &
to be able to find things and
earn enough money so as
to be able to put books together
to publish works and books
to have time

(fragment of Failures in Infinitives
by Bernadette Mayer)

Lisette Ros: video ‘…elk rondje is anders during Quarantine’ (2020) (installation view galerie Barbara Thumm).

“This work is about researching the convention of ‘rondjes lopen’ – ‘walking around in circles’ and originates from 2015

During these times of the Corona virus outbreak, surviving mostly in our homes, Dutchies are allowed to get some fresh air outside, the so-called intelligent lockdown. This results in a lot of walking around the neighborhood, as well as a lot of walking in circles inside my small apartment. This action works very therapeutic, I do it a lot. It uplifts the convention of ‘rondjes lopen’.

Therefore I started to revise this work and present it again as a renewed version, now more relevant than ever and in collaboration with videographer Joao mb Costa.

What I find interesting about this animalistic act is the moment my compulsiveness turns into vulnerability, when I cross the lines. I really wanted to put focus on the act of ‘rondjes lopen’, and therefore I erased the aspects that could be disturbing: my clothing, the music, my sight.”

Watch the entire performance here.

© Lisette Ros

‘Reframing Conventions’ for INTERBELLUM #1 – launch live performance, Tuesday 6th October, 10AM – 6PM

“The work ‘Reframing Conventions’ by Lisette Ros is an 8-hour sitting performance which originates from 2013, in which she researches the convention of sitting as a part of INTERVENING SPACE. Back then, the focus was on the 8-hour workdays in the Netherlands and the act of sitting which causes a 40% increasement of premature death. The COVID-19 pandemic gave the research into the act of sitting a new layer. The empty offices could now represent the reframing of conventions. Worldwide spaces got alienated from their functions. This interbellum is about the loss of function and redefining of the space. In this live performance Ros solely sits for eight hours on the same chair which she has been using since 2013, without practicing any other human action. Same relevance, different context. 

‘De Stelling van Amsterdam’ as a location offers an interesting decor as it was officially build as a part of Amsterdams defense mechanism for war, but has never served its original purpose.

© Lisette Ros
© Gabriel Rolt, Maria Langerhorst

Lisette Ros: video ‘The Mirror’ (2019) (installation view galerie Barbara Thumm)

“In this work ‘The Mirror’ I am researching narcissistic bodily behavior in its origin. The modern (Western) society is drenched with narcissistic behavior, as are we, as are you and as am I. Some have already announced the narcissism epidemic* years ago, and not only in a good way. Psychiatry is the reflective mirror of the world we are living in and patients are the symptom carriers of a disease where the entire society will be suffering from.

Launched inside a specific room, situated in what felt as a frigid, lonesome park villa I intervened space with my (light) installation and live performance of ‘The Mirror’: by saturating my skin with the black, diseased water I confront and isolate myself with my mirror image until I am entirely diseased by my own narcissism and begin to drown. The narcissism survives. Captured by myself, for myself, with myself and because of myself.

This work was especially developed for my performance in the villa as being part of The Living Museum. Though, this was only the start of the visualization of my research into narcissistic (bodily) behavior. The continuation of this research is ongoing, as always.

The process is the work.”

*Twenge, J.M., Campbell, K.W., 2009, The Narcissism Epidemic: Living in the Age of Entitlement, Simon & Schuster

© Lisette Ros

Lisette Ros: ‘Het Lege Ogenblik / The Emtpy Time’ (2016) (audio view galerie Barbara Thumm)

Now, stop browsing. You are suffering from a constant disintegration and destruction of attention and contemplation because of the World Wide Web. You will be confronted with your restlessness, emptiness, the hyperfocus on your clock time, your concentration and [im]patience, hoping to arrive at a state of ‚being’.


INTERVENING SPACE: Het lege ogenblik / The empty time is part of Lisette Ros’ ongoing research series on the loss of the sense of self and the identification process.



© Lisette Ros