Bubblegum Pink

The color “bubblegum pink” or “drunk-tank pink” was used in the American prison system in the early 1970s: holding cells were painted with the color, which was said to calm and soothe aggressive prisoners. In the installation Bubblegum Pink, the public is confronted by three different mental climates in which the color pink is an essential component.

Mental Well is a pink rug with a worn-down circular
pattern, as though someone had walked around and around on the carpet for a long time. The rug is flanked by two wall drawings made with fuses, Short Circuit No. 5 and Short Circuit No. 6.

T-Group, a five-channel video installation, presents a group of parrots repeating short phrases in a hysterical cacophony.

Bubblegum Pink Chamber is an enclosed cell with antistatic foam rubber walls; the entrance wall is made of pink acrylic, and a pink fan in the ceiling slowly circulates the air in the chamber.

"Bubblegum Pink" illustration by Johan Mets
"T-Group," 1996. Video monitors, Styrofoam podiums, digital video, three-minutes loop. Photo: Jan Almerén
"T-Group," sequence
Floor: "Mental Well," 1996. Handmade carpet, 350 x 350 cm. Wall: "Short Circuit No. 5," 1996. Gundpowder fuse, ECT handles, cable, 300 x 160 cm. Photo: Jan Almerén
"Bubblegum Pink Chamber" (interior). Photo: Jan Almerén