John Bock

ICA - Institute of Contemporary Arts, London

It won’t come as a surprise to learn that the whole thing was bonkers. You could enter through a door but were strongly advised to climb a ladder—the first of many—to reach a crawl space. Once inside there were rooms on stilts, walkways, scaffolds, spaces built from cinder blocks, straw bales, wood, and tinfoil, and more tunnels to crawl through and ladders to climb. You could not explore this environment without at some point getting down on hands and knees or hiking up your skirt to clamber more easily from one level to another. Its title was “Klütterkammer,” a regional word referring to the sort of junk store–cum–workspace found on northern German farms of the kind on which John Bock grew up. It was both adventure playground and an Aladdin’s cave, into which Bock brought a selection of artworks, films, and ephemera signaling his interests and obsessions. The mix included both

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