Text: Dr. Elke Backes
[This translation was done via ChatGPT and is not edited.]
Have you ever heard of the Birdcage Theory? That theory that derives a connection between the birdcage and the coordinate system of the globe? The author is – according to the current state of research – unknown, but the Birdcage Theory (abbreviated as BT) oscillates somewhere between art and science. In insider circles, BT is already being discussed as THE hot topic for upcoming art events in Vienna, Cologne (Art Cologne), Copenhagen and Berlin.
Connecting art and science is not new, but the manner of this staging will undoubtedly provoke new levels of intrigue, be entertaining, generate a unique artistic experience, and retrospectively inspire contemplation… in other words, it will be something new. This is ensured by Gernot Seeliger, Anton Peitersen, and Dargelos Kersten of Pegasus Product.
The studio is currently being vigorously worked on to create an atmospheric framework, as the artist collective explained and showed me during my visit. The studio is a combination of storage, workshop, and experimental laboratory.”
 oscillate = fluctuate, swing, change. Duden, accessed on August 19, 2023.
 ready-gemaked = ironic reference by Pegasus Product to the Ready-made. Explanation follows in the text. Used here to denote the format of this art dialogue as one that eschews perfection and attempts to experimentally align with the art of Pegasus Product.
I am familiar with some aspects of their project Power Peckerl Paradise, which I had the opportunity to explore firsthand during this year’s art festival sommer.frische.kunst in Bad Gastein. It captured the enthusiasm of both visitors and the press alike. There were bird cages there as well. Otherwise, the focus was on the exploration of esoteric mechanisms.
Above, top left, top right: Power Peckerl Paradise; Middle, top: Birdcage for the Birdcage Theory.
While Gernot, Dargelos, and I had already settled comfortably at one of the workbenches for our conversation, Anton was meticulously engaged in the preparation of rosehip tea, which currently plays a significant role in the context of the Birdcage Theory. “This here is a drying machine. We use it to dry the rosehips we’ve collected,” Gernot explains to me with a serious expression. “Currently, we are still refining the method for brewing the tea.”
“On our tour, we aim to motivate visitors to further develop the Birdcage Theory through discourse with us and amongst themselves. The rosehip is crucial in the exploration of BT,” Anton adds with a sense of significance as he solemnly serves me the tea he has prepared.
Dargelos and Anton collecting rosehips.
In front of me hovers a bread basket filled with fragrant croissants, also part of the new project, as I now discover. The structure consists of a broken chipboard base, a curved aluminum rod, and the attached bread basket.
“This is our Le Brot Corbusier. The aluminum rod is dismantled from a broken laundry rack. We love working with it repeatedly because it’s a naturally replenishing resource. The result strongly reminiscent of Duchamp’s bottle dryer, but not a ready-made, as we like to say, ready-gemaked. It mustn’t be perfect. There needs to be some hands-on, there still needs to be something gemaked,” says Dargelos, as everyone bursts into approving laughter.
Left: Gernot explaining Le Brot Corbusier, right: Dargelos studying the tea packaging label.
Short, serious interview section
E.B.: How do you come up with your ideas?
Gernot: Essentially, we celebrate bad and silly ideas and then engage with them. In other words, we start shallow and keep layering new levels until it has the right depth. It’s important for us to provide a different approach to art; in a humorous way that appeals to everyone.
Anton explains the process of idea development using the example of the Sülzensaal project.
E.B.: How do you plan to motivate visitors to actively participate in the discourse on the Birdcage Theory?
Anton: First and foremost, we will create a pub-like atmosphere, a classic setting for lively debates. The experiment is to make a claim so absurd that it prompts reflection and encourages people to join the discussion.
E.B.: What specifically interests you in this?
Gernot: In the context of how, for example, conspiracy theories develop, what interests us is the exploration of the phenomenon where the truth of the starting point is no longer questioned; only what is right in the discussion because, at some point, the debate has taken on a life of its own. How can assertions be positioned as genuinely debated theories, repeated as self-sustaining narratives, and continuously expanded upon? It’s primarily these mechanisms that interest us.
Dargelos: But, mind you, that’s just our background. Everyone is free to see something else in it. Art and Science, sculpture, installation, performance… That means we operate on all these levels and want to learn something new in exchange with people as well. So [brief pause]… somehow something always oscillates or is ephemeral [general cheering again].
In conclusion, I can only recommend attending one of the Birdcage Theory Tour dates. Fun and art experiences are guaranteed for you ,)
Vienna: Opening on November 9, 2023, First District
Cologne: Art Cologne from November 16 to 19, 2023, in Cologne, Booths of Galerie Georg Nothelfer and Booth C of sommer.frische.kunst
Berlin: January 12, 2024, Showroom at Galerie Georg Nothelfer, Grolmanstr. 28, 10623 Berlin