Untitled, is a 1995-97 artwork by Robert Gober. It is a complex installation that is now permanently installed in Schaulager, Basel. As the video captures, in the middle of a room there is a statue of Mary with a culvert pipe in her stomach. If one peers through the pipe in her womb you can see the wooden stairs with water flowing down. Beneath the stairs the water pours into a grate in the floor which continues under the floor to grates in suitcases and a grate beneath Mary. Strange things are seen in the flowing water including coins, seaweed, sunlight and feet. Here is the list of all the materials used in the installation: Cast concrete, bronze, steel, copper, nickel silver, brick, fiberglass, urethane, cast plastics, paint, lead, motors, water, leather, forged iron, silk satin, beeswax, human hair, cedar, pumps.
The feet are those of a man who is holding an infant above the water.
Messiaen’s commentary on XVI Regard des prophètes, des bergers, et des Mages (Gaze of the prophets, shepherds, and Wise Men)
“Exotic music – tam-tams and oboe, enormous and nasal concert…”
Can you imagine holding a baby, and knowing with certainty that the child was both human and divine? What other experiences in life are even remotely similar?
Christians around the world gaze at images of Mary. What do we see when we look at her? She performed one of the most difficult and selfless acts when she answered the Lord. Now we see her less as a person and more as an icon. She is a statue through which a conduit has been made.
On the one hand we are all lost in Christ. We must die to ourselves that we might live in Christ.
The strangest thing is not that we lose ourselves in Christ, rather, ultimately we are found in Christ as well.
In Mary’s womb an infant comes but that infant will bring us will Him. (??)