(Revisiting) Ann Veronica Janssens, Yellowbluepink – EFFECTS ON THE CONSCIOUSNESS FROM THE OBSCURATION OF SPACE


It is clear that the philosophical ideas  (Lacan and Mzerleau-Ponty) have been throughly  explored within artists’ work; reflective within the recent Ann Veronica Janssens installation, part of the States of Mind exhibition at the Wellcome Collection, Lonodn,‘Yellowbluepink’. The viewer is exposed to a viewer to their own sensory experiences through engulfing them within a colour field as they enter into the immersive installation. The viewer is submitting to the act of perception as they are unable to see any other details within the room, the depth, or any surface and tend to immediately reach out for the walls as they enter, possibly as a safety precaution to find their surroundings. You are ‘subsumed by the experience of seeing’ and question the way we see the world as a habit, as we do during our daily experiences and therefore the work ‘reasserts the everyday wonder of sensation’ (The Wellcome Collection, 2015). The body’s limits are confirmed and established by space through proof of personal existence; when the confirmation is taken away, we are left to question our reality, thus leading to a disruption of our sense of self.




However, there are once again differences in opinion in how it was experienced, but these fit within the two categories of bliss or horror. Whether the viewer experienced an overwhelming sense of unease and particularly difficult to stay in the room at the beginning eventually the feelings were overcome with an unusually significant sense of isolation. To see a single colour field is also increadably perculiar- eventually it was possible to see bodily activity within eyes, such as cell movement, an unusual prospect. It is inescapable to feel aware of your body. The viewer can see around their skin around the eyes and nose. They become particularly aware of their hands and what they are doing with their body, but most overwhelmingly they are aware of their consciousness. Unquestionably, each viewer that participates can ‘see themselves seeing’. Your experience of being you is given a renewal. Eventually, feelings slightly more of comfort should return to the viewer, especially as there is an awareness that it an organised exhibition. Unless entering it completely alone, there are many people walking around that exhibition at the same time, talking to each other, some even shouting to find friends to accompany them due to unease or excitement. Discernibly, exposure of a viewer to their own sensory experiences through phenomenological aspects is apparent, and provides an image of ourselves within our minds in which we can reflect upon is proved by Ann Veronica Janssens in this work.


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