Sarah Ortmeyer

Figge von Rosen Galerie

For the work that lends its name to Sarah Ortmeyer’s most recent show, “SABOTAGE,” the artist filled the floor of the gallery’s front room with chopped-up shoes made of light-colored wood. The shoes were actually French sabots, peasant’s clogs—the little-known root of the word sabotage: French agricultural workers defended themselves against the mechanization of farming by tossing their sabots into the new threshing machines. In the nineteenth century, it was relatively simple to throw a wrench into the machine of the powers that be; if only it were so easy these days. In this sense, the entire gallery room made a strangely nostalgic impression. At its center stood a white pedestal on which four small matchboxes were arranged beneath a protective glass cube. Their tiny black-and-white labels show photos of people making clenched fists—that universally comprehensible symbol of resistance—with

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