These art works suggest that when objects become externalised (as in the act of building) they can sometimes have a kind of agency of their own. The act of making, which is in this sense is a kind of collaboration, exposes the internal/external feedback loops at work between objects and subjects, private and public, past and present and, death and life.
The grafting of my face upon the mythological body of the gnome began as an attempt to remake identity within second nature. The gnome has become a metaphor for the inevitability of the influences of our environment. But who is remade in the process? It would seem that this sculpture represents a desire to identify with the aims of such an object. Within this process of projection the gnome has captured part of the desire for identification.
The representation of the subject as inanimate is a desire to inhabit a certain space. Similarly, Goss discusses Heinrich von Kleist's story 'On the Marionette Theatre' as a demonstration of a statue's ability to impose upon a person. The story begins with a young man drying himself in a public bath. He catches sight of himself in a mirror in which he inadvertently assumes the pose of the famous German statue Spinario which depicts a boy pulling a thorn from his foot. The boy remarks to his friends about the resemblance and begins to become obsessed with this image. At this point the boy begins to find himself compulsively copying the statue's pose, becoming ever more ridiculous with each attempt. It is as if the (unselfconscious boy has been trapped, eventually standing in front of the mirror for days, 'like an iron net, an invisible and incomprehensible power enveloped the free play of gestures'. in the end the boy becomes the statue's double. The desire of identification is so strong that the boy allows himself to be moved by a force outside of himself. Dispossessed, and depersonalised by assimilation into the statues space the boy represents the symptoms of psychasthenia and mimicry.
Psychasthenia as interpreted by Caillois represents a loss of personality to space, "Space pursues them, encircles them, digest them in a gigantic phagocytosis. It ends by replacing them". Then the body separates itself from thought, the individual breaks the boundaries of his skin and occupies the other side of senses . Indeed the end point would be assimilation into the environment. The inherent possibilities of extending the boundaries of self may mean merging to the point of a 'reduced mode of existence'. Not in order to colonise a space but to better understand a certain position by collapsing the distances between subject and object.