The artpiece I created for the forest art symposium swims in the middle of the idyllic so-called Goethe pond in the forest at the Böllenfalltor in Darmstadt, where Goethe is said to have sat and wrote poems.

I take up the theme of romance, the seduction and the power of nature, incorporated by a “water woman”. In romantic art and literature the “water woman”, mermaid or melusine represented the seductive, feminine and natural woman - the muse - on the one hand, and the powerful, devouring primordial mother - the instinctual nature - man was afraid of.

The fish woman, descendant of female heathen deities, sits as a guardian in the pond, at the gate from this world to the herafter, from the conscious to the unconscious.

The installation consists of two fish tails, a ring and a crown. The floating ring represents the connection with the matter: water. The modeled fish tails are a relic of human civilization because they are filled with garbage. The crown is another ring that opens to heaven.
The crown represents the completion of the artistic work, and is also a symbol of power, describing the hubris of man’s will to subjugate nature.

The work »Melusine« shows the bipolarity of the romantic image of women, which corresponds to the ambivalent notions and attitudes of people towards nature today:

- The longing for the idyll of nature and the fear of the threats from nature.
- The human striving for preservation and at the same time the destruction of nature through human intervention.

During the symposium, the forest was cleared of plastic waste together with students. The garbage was washed in the Goethe pond and hung up to dry in the forest. These traces were the first evidence of the emerging work of art and generated a lot of anger among the forest visitors, who felt disturbed by the garbage because it was so demonstratively exposed. Two fish tails were sewn and filled with the garbage. A discarded truck tire served as a float and a dog collar as a crown.
The yellow fabric is already a waste product from an earlier work of mine, the yellow trash tree. As an environmental artist, the recycling aspect of my work is important to me. I always try to transform man-made waste into art.

The Melusine it tries to limit the damage that humans cause to nature and thus stands for mindful treatment of nature.

September 2012
Goethe Pond in the forest at the Böllenfalltor

International Forest Art Trail, Damstadt

Pics by Wolfgang Hrycyna, Rolf Gönner, Ute Ritschel, Doro Seror