Delirium, 2003

Posters, refrigerator, mattress, cardboard boxes, vibrator, turntable, strobelight.
Dimensions variable.

The Delirium exhibition held at the vine and liquor museum in Stockholm was a rambling set-up of hundreds of empty liquor bottles, filled ashtrays, filthy mattresses and an old armchair fitted with a vibrator that made it shake. The scene was illuminated by several strobe light arrangements. From time to time the turntable played Goodiepal’s Carlsberg single. At the opening, a range of delirium drinks were served containing absinth, flavoured vodka and various coloured liqueurs. Since free booze is always popular in Sweden the shitty drinks were gulped down.

Note: Throughout my life I have been surrounded by alcoholism – in my own family, and in those of my playmates, artist colleagues – as well as drinking a bit too much myself. I have a clear recollection of a time when I saw several people in a more or less advanced state of alcohol poisoning. In 1997 I was invited to an exhibition at the CAC in Vilnius. On the second day of my stay, all the artists were invited to a local restaurant where the first thing that was placed on the table was a large bowl of cured pig ears, beer and vodka. The ears were nothing but layers of yellowish skin and white fat. They were hard to chew. After ample quatities of ears, beers and vodka the night ended in the fanciest club in Vilnius, the hangout favoured by the local mob. The ears and the Starka vodka were having their effect on me and one of my friends landed himself in trouble by talking to one of the mob girls. It ended with us of the place and making ourselves scarce, still reeling under the culture shock of pig ears, mob girls and bottles of vodka. I was gripped by distorted vision and a torrent of absurd thoughts gripped me all the way back to my strange Soviet-style youth hostel.

I found myself the next day in the chipboard bed, looking out of the window and thinking it was still night, but glancing at the clock I discovered that it was the following night, and that I had slept the whole of the day. I felt surprisingly refreshed after my day in bed, though still haunted by the bizarre idea that the mob and the authorities were searching for me in the outskirts of Vilnius.