A Monkey Peeled An Onion…
by Marjolein Blom

A Monkey Peeled An Onion…  [In Search of Nothing]

by Marjolein Blom


Academic freedom is a prerequisite for scientists to challenge established truths and expand the boundaries of our knowledge, and therefore a requirement for new scientific revolutions to occur. After the second world war, the idea that a free society depends upon the free search for truth and its free exposition, became increasingly important in Europe and the United States. In the past years several impulses and trends such as political interference, dependent funding and the increasing importance being attached to utility values, are putting academic freedom under renewed pressure.
For this body of work I have researched the concept of nothingness and the vacuum by examining philosophical and scientific theories about nothingness, matter itself and elementary particles.
This has resulted in a large body of images in which exactly the intuitive process and artistic freedom play an important role. Leading the viewer past some of the great philosophers and most revolutionary scientific theories in history. From Thales who claimed ‘nothing’ could impossibly exist but to whom space would be as empty as it can be when all matter has turned into its primordial form, water. To phycisists like Casimir, Hooke and Boyle. And from the mysterious dark matter and dark energy that both permeate space, but have been undetected untill this day, to a visual experiment using all elements from Medeleev’s table.
To modestly oppose to the instrumental view, that both art and science should primarily exist to directly serve the needs of society.

You take an onion and peel it and peel it, right to the heart, and there’s nothing there.There must be something, you believe, there must be- you take another onion and start peeling it, keep on peeling, at last, nothing… Do you understand the sadness of this monkey? Dazai Osamu, ‘A Record of the Autumn Wind’