Eva Koch’s art is often place-specific and interactive. Her works are about communication and the shared human experience, often expressed in a sensuous and simple language where image and word merge.
Koch’s video works are often large installations. Sometimes she places the camera in the centre, placing also the viewer in the middle of a story – of a moving image without beginning or end, sucking the viewer in to contemplate its meanings.
Through reflections on her own and on other people’s life, Koch shows that the universal and the personal are not opposed spheres but that one contains the other. This quality makes her work perhaps unusually accessible within a contemporary art context.
Eva Koch’s sculptural installations also relate in scale to the body. From an almost invisibly work like the Mind the Gap-sound installation to the Earth Sculpture, Lyshøjen, Denmark’s largest sculpture near the city of Esbjerg made in in collaboration with landscape architect Steen Høyer: created out of 800,000 cubic meters of earth it’s become a very visible landmark in the West Jutland landscape.
Outside Denmark, Koch has exhibited in Europe, Equador, and Australia amongst other places. She participated in the Venice Biennale in 2003 and 2005 and in the Sydney Biennale in 2014.
Her anchoring in a sculpture tradition combined with the desire, ability and struggle to conquer new forms of expression make Eva Koch stands out as a clear, seriously working visual storyteller with a focus on the human - in the midst of art’s maelstrom of troubled images.
Calais is a video and sound work created for Auguste Rodin’s dramatic sculptural group The Burghers of Calais (the Ny Carlsberg Glyptotek, Copenhagen). Rodin’s work is an interpretation of the legend about the 6 leading citizens of Calais who in 1347 offered to sacrifice themselves in order to save their fellow citizens during the English siege of the city. Another version of the story relates that they were not leading citizens but convicted criminals who were due to be executed anyway. Victims or heroes? Whatever the case, the sculpture does not show them as ideal heroes, but as 6 emaciated men terrified by the fate awaiting them. In her work Eva Koch has chosen to bring Calais back to this exiled group of citizens and has filmed the city as it appears today, a city marked by unemployment and the increasing number of illegal immigrants seeking to pass through the Eurotunnel. The video shows everyday life in the city, but devotes especial attention to the traffic, the cars, the train and the ferry that link Calais with the rest of the world.
Villar – Manuela’s Children is based on an unusual story deriving from the artist’s own family, which was split up during the Spanish Civil War and only reunited by chance many years later.
Villar – Manuela’s Children is presented on a single screen and is structured as an interactive documentary, in which 4 siblings tell about their lives from 1934 to today, with a chief focus on the Spanish Civil War and the 1960s. Besides the four main tracks there are sequences that cast light on the family’s common starting-point, the small Spanish village of Villar del Cobo near Teruel.
This visual art documentary combines elements from the cinema’s linear narrative with the interactive possibilities of the digital format. The user can move freely among the narrators, follow a single person continuously, make random swoops or repeat individual sequences.