Cape Finisterre is on the Spanish coast. The Romans believed that it was the end of the earth. The installation Finisterre takes place at sundown at the water’s edge, as the viewer lies at an angle, their head tilted, and looks out across the water at the horizon and the sky.
The installation begins in an enclosed space and takes visitors to a spot about 30 metres from the water’s edge. Wearing headphones, visitors listen to the voice of a performer seated at the waterfront a few yards away. The voice transports them to the end of the world which, this evening, is here, just beyond this horizon. Eight minutes later—the time it takes the sun’s light to reach the earth—performer and visitor meet where the water meets the land.
When the viewer sits up straight, and their perspective shifts again, another person has taken their place in the distance at the same height. Both stand up and pass each other as they walk to, or from, the end.
“For this project I did some research into the concept of the ‘event horizon’, a term that describes the boundary of our perception. I thought it was interesting that this borderline is relative, not absolute, and shifts depending on the person, place and time. The first photo of a black hole was taken while Finisterre was being made. We can’t see any further than that yet. The Romans were once convinced that they’d found the end of the earth. I imagine it must have been terrifying to have known that ‘the edge’ was right there. At the same time perhaps consoling. Today, the zero kilometre marker is in Finisterre, but the thought of the scale of the universe is dizzying and the question of where – or what – the end is may be just as topical.”
It is an experience lasting less than half an hour that totally changes how you see your surroundings – it truly feels as if you’ve never seen that stretch of water and that city before, and Amsterdam’s soporific skyline is instantly sublime.
Finisterre assails you with the beauty of everyday life and forces you to trust in something that initially inspires fear.
Sander Janssens in Theaterkrant | 8 July 2019Read the full review here.
The earth is round, it is clear, for I get a sense of its sphere continuing around on the other side. And I see the light slowly getting thinner and thinner as the sun goes down. As my guide leaves me alone but still does not leave me completely as she lays a soothing hand on my leg, I just look up at the sky and its clouds. A flock of birds flies over it, sharply drawn up. I have rarely seen anything so beautiful!
With a simple grip, Rita Hoofwijk’s Finisterre literally turns our, the viewers’ perspective on the world, so that one becomes extremely sensory aware of the greatness of nature and the vulnerable transience of man.
Mette Garfield in Bastard Blog | 20 Sept 2021Read the full review here (Danish).
Felix Schellekens, Erik van de Wijdeven, David Weber-Krebs, Annefleur Schep, Daan Simons, Tim Bogaerts, Charlot van der Meer, Julie Helsen, Hannah Boer, Eja Due, Annika Lewis, Morten Nielsen, SoAP Maastricht, Metropolis, IN SITU
2019 5 – 14 July Over het IJ Festival, Amsterdam (NL)
2020 canceled Theater Aan Zee, Ostend (BE)
2020 canceled Metropolis, Copenhagen (DEN)
2021 15 – 19 Sept Metropolis, Copenhagen (DEN)