"MC: … I felt I lost the thread of my work several times, started doing crap. Then I tried to pull it back. The whole ‘The Opening’ was a response to my feeling that I was losing my way. And I don’t mean in terms of producing art, which I find quite easy, but in terms of doing something that is thought to be relevant, which I guess is imagining that it is relevant to someone else who also desires to find some relevance. Because I’ve been an artist for so long, I’m interested in the idea of the wrong turning, taking the wrong turn in the road, which in German is sometimes called a Holzweg.
JK: What’s the difference between a Holzweg and a Feldweg? This is Heidegger, right?
MC: Heidegger worked with the old Holzweg concept and turned it into something more double.
JK: And Feldweg is a good path?
ES: The field path? I’ve never read Heidegger.
MC: No, I haven’t really read it. But I like to imagine that there is something like a wrong turning or Holzweg. And there must be, because people go so badly wrong in their work and also their life. And for me the wrong turning is here a double question: no matter how awful it is to return to the Tate café and just stay there and keep doing shows about the Tate café which refer to the fact that I am so traumatised by Reena Spaulings’s feeble wallpaper, perhaps that even that is better than moving on. Because I had allowed myself to get annoyed, which I find deeply humiliating. I thought it would be almost better to stay annoyed and sit there in that café, fuming forever, rather than trying to move on. Whereas I felt your approach was: something bad happened, let’s move on."
Merlin Carpenter, Emily Sundblad & John Kelsey in “WELCOME TO THE TATE CAFÉ: A conversation between Merlin Carpenter, Emily Sundblad and John Kelsey.” Paris, March 2012. Source.