Cataract recalls rapids but also the cataracts that can cloud our eyes as we grow old. The word Gorge also has two meanings of course: a narrow valley and a greedy way to eat or indulge in something.
Cataract Gorge is installed in a lock in the north of the Bruges “egg”, the place where the city is linked to the sea. In the Middle Ages, the goods and wealth of Bruges flowed into the city along these canals. Today, the canals bear silent testimony to this economic and artistic boom period. All they transport now is an endless stream of tourists ogling the city’s cultural heritage. Visitors often seem to be fascinated by the timeless, frozen aspect of Bruges. But by closing itself off behind its historic image, the city is hindering its natural development and transformation.
Cataract Gorge questions the implications of such a conservative policy and the price that Bruges will pay on a social and cultural level. This work, which creates a riveting spectacle on the water, asks us to consider the forces that are at work behind the facade of a frozen city. Romy Achituv creates a metaphor for change by literally and symbolically stirring the waters.
The work of Israeli artist Romy Achituv (b. 1958, Rome, IT) is concerned with issues of language, time and memory. He is interested in the language of visual representation and in the dynamic between spectatorship and interaction. Trained as a sculptor, Achituv works across mediums and disciplines.