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Good Luck


LAb[au], Manuel Abendroth, Jérôme Decock, Els Vermang
size: variable
Techniques: 4 leaf clover field

a field is planted, its size is adapted to the space


2019 ___ - calculated chance, Socièté, Brussels
2019 ___ - IF THEN ELSE, Casino Luxembourg, Luxembourg City
2021 ___ - Ce mouvement qui déplace les lignes, La Patinoire, Brussels

Four-leaved clover is a symbol of good luck, but if you encounter an entire field, would your fate be changed?

The project deals with the difference between ‘chance’ and ‘luck’; between its probabilistic dimension and its symbolic understanding. Given its small size, clover, and especially four-leafed clover, is a symbol of happiness. The chance of finding one in nature is statistically evaluated as 1 to 10,000. As such the artwork confronts the possible with the probable tracing dialectics between rationalism and superstition. In Christian symbolism, the four-leaf originally represents the cross and the four Gospels. But throughout the time it has become a sign of luck not only to its rarity, but originally on the vigorous vital growth of these plants. Legend tells when Eva was driven out of paradise, she took a four-leaf clover which since then symbolically embodies a piece of paradise. In 1640, John Melton satirizes the superstition of the four-leaf in his satire Astrologaster, marking the first written proof of four-leaf clover as a symbol for luck. Through cultural history, the clover incorporates the opposition of an agnostic deterministic conviction with a romantic imagination. This classical tension between these two is further actualized by a dried and framed 4-leaved exemplar confronting a white clover; ‘Trifolium Repens L’ as a product of nature and the purple clover; ‘Quadrifolium Repens T’ as a product of genetic engineering which opposes imagination and manipulation. In a universe where everything is possible, we still need a spark.

TransCoding: ancient symbolics to contemporary meaning codified by genetics and science


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