mina mohandes deutsch biography home

every day we use things that are so incredibly simple and useful, that we barely notice their existence. they don´t need a user-manual and have a general tendency to disappear into the white noise of everyday work routine. included in this "always present / always fugitive" category of things: rubber-bands, paper-clips, felt-tips, drawing-pins etc. they are all part of our environment, they don´t have any specific place and nevertheless they penetrate our lives in such obvious ways, that we only register their absence, but rarely their presence.
it is exactly in this anonymous world of commodities that mina mohandes finds her materials. she doesn´t use a camera for her photographic works - she uses felt-tips, and rubber-bands are turned into objects or spacious installation. one can recognize the principle of the flexible, of the variable size and the freely scaleable as a central aspect in her work. Just as rubber bands are flexible in form, shape and size, photography also doesn´t have a "proper" format. the results can be either monumental or minute. flexible space is confronted with the flexible surface.
of central significance to the work of mina mohandes is her explicit refusal to identify its exact nature and boundaries. depending on one´s preference, one can look at her works on photographic paper as photography, graphics or painting. but that anyway will not take one any closer to the disturbing beauty of her labyrinth of lines. beauty is a perplexing infinity, raising more questions, than it answers.
mina mohandes fills surfaces in order to generate spaces. Her lines transform themselves into three-dimensional structures, that seen to hover in a state between organic pipes from a less than reassuring future and computer-generated models of a molecular world.
mina mohandes has taken over a terrain without any zones that can only be entered by those who abandon a categorical way of thinking.
her problem will be, that there is hardly any viewer who will fulfill this condition and who is willing to jettison the comfortable patterns of once acquired classification and grids.
if one looks at art as a construct that the artist places between himself and the world, then mina mohandes confronts us with "void". but a void that is paradoxically generated by abundance, because her works appear to circumscribe primarily the spaces between objects.
rubber-bands define themselves exactly through the void they circumscribe and when they accumulate to three-dimensional objects their negative-volume gets amplified. it´s as if space has been determined by exactly what it is not. this effect culminates in her ball-objects, where rubber-bands confine only themselves.
like ludwig wittgenstein in "on certainty" mina mohandes seems to ask, if objects also exist when we don´t look at them. her answer would be: "yes - but as a void". a void, that can only be filled by the viewer, who will then turn the object into what it is not: unequivocal.

herwig kempinger
(catalogue "mina mohandes")