Caspar Berger

(The Netherlands) *1965 in Utrecht

In a variety of ways the sculptor Casper Berger explores the self-portrait in three-dimensional art. Two of his bronzes, thematising his own skin as a personal or cultural membrane between inner and outer worlds, were to be seen in “Blickachsen 8”. This year, “Blickachsen 9” shows a work dealing with the skeleton as the carrier of one’s identity. More than eight metres high, Berger’s “Ego Vivo / Self-portrait 25” presents a giant replica of his right upper arm bone as a bronze monument standing on a classical pedestal. Using a CT scanner and a 3D printer Berger made an exact copy of his bone and enlarged it. For the artist, the bone functions as a pars pro toto, a part representing the whole. The three-dimensional copy is literally an image of his inner self. Carved into the pedestal are the words “EGO VIVO”. This “I live” – delivered, no doubt, with a wink of the eye – is a comment on the logical contradiction that one’s bones are not at all a sign of life but rather of what remains after one dies. With an unexpected richness of significance Berger’s self-portrait points to a thematic of identity, life and death, as well as to the classical art of moumental sculpture and the tradition of veneration of relics.