Max Grüter «My Own Private Space Programme» 2003.
«I always work with the figure of the astronaut. Astronauts have fascinated me since I watched the moon landing as a small boy. That image never leaves my mind…People need to broaden their experience, play with everything and explore the possibilities of life. I don't limit myself to one medium. I incorporate sculpture, painting, text, drawing, and modeling. I've become the explorer of virtual space. See that astronaut, his face is my face. It's a form of virtual performance» ~ Max Grüter.
filmstill, animated electronic sculpture
American Association for the Advancement of Science, Washington.
Max Grüter concerns himself with everything that affects the reality of the human space traveller. So he meticulously set himself up as an astronaut and subjected himself to all the rigours that an astronaut has to put up with: the training, for example, or the launch of the rocket, which is very taxing physically.
Since 1998, Grüter has worked with a 3-D modeling computer program to create virtual metaphors of the astronaut. Grüter blends the figure of the astronaut with his own image to depict an explorer who is at once reaching beyond boundaries and grounded by personal experience. He blends art and science to inspire others to overcome obstacles and reach beyond the reality of routine.
Grüter said his attachment to space travel is based on the notion that the astronaut «exists in the 'now. This exhibit reflects that. I decided to use the computer program because it's very important that I convey the present moment. These pieces can exist only in this contemporary time because this technology wasn't around in the 1980s or 1990s.»
Much of Grüter's work is comprised of lambda prints in aluminum of 3-D electronic sculpted tableaux; 3-D electronic sculptures made through laminated object manufacturing; and animated 3-D electronic sculptures. In addition to the computer art, the mixed-media exhibit includes a hand tufted sheep's wool rug crafted with footsteps that represent Neil Armstrong's first steps on the moon, and traditional images in blue paint drawn on to the walls of the rotunda in the American Association for the Advancement of Science gallery.