Schipper, Bernhard

I am the doorway – porta sum / 2000

manipulated photography, Leipzig Museum of Natural History

During the time of the collaborative exhibition project “naturalmente” – this artwork was replacing the original item in the permanent exhibition of the Leipzig Museum of Natural History.

porta sum - natural_mente
I am the doorway – porta sum

I am the doorway – Vodka / 2000

Advertisement (committed work)

Few months after the success of the “Last Supper” performance a premium beverage company were asking for an authentic Ad for their cultural sponsoring program. Based on the original settings of the “Last Supper” performance this still life was created to appear in a light box.

One of these light boxes was installed as part of the permanent collection at the art-gallery INTERDRUCK in Leipzig.

I am the doorway – The Last Supper / 2000

performance, art-gallery INTERDRUCK Schipper~Patitz, Leipzig

The Last Supper pt. 2
part II, 2000 July 10th, photography: André Köhler

The Last Supper pt. 3
part III, 2000 July 12th, photography: André Köhler

Dear Sir or Madam,
The work with the title “I am the doorway – Abendmahl” which you can see today describes the development of an artistic work into a product.
As a result of this development, the work manifests itself today by means of an artificial product presentation.
Every time has its own text.
The TOR software i developed articulates a text which can be exclusively read by machines. The assimilation of the text by eating symbolises, as a philosophical metaphor, belief in the truthfulness of words.
The eater acts – similarly to a scanner – as hardware, he does not understand the text.
Through the assimilation the spirit of each, equal to the software, is loaded with codified data.
We have to trust in our software.
This food is thus the only human spirit in this context – the revelation of the word during supper.
As: ”He who does not believe sees nothing, and he who does not see believes not.” The codified text available in the food contains one of the quotes divided in four panel paintings from the book John/ Chapter 4/ Verse 34:
My food is (panel 1)
to do the pleasure of  (panel 2)
him who sent me (panel 3)
and to make his work complete (panel 4)
He references in this case the Christian-Western background of these images in our culture, despite all future visions.

I am the doorway – Pork / 2000

object/ready made

“I am the doorway – Pork” is a variation about western countries think about agriculture as an industry. This object consists of three preserving jars – two of them containg action figures of pigs and one containing a real swine-ear and a floppy-disc with the source code of the TOR software. All contents are salted.

“I am the doorway – Pork” was a contribution to the agriEXPOcultura 2000 contest and was awarded with it’s first prize including the exhibition at EXPO 2000 in Hannover.

I am the doorway / 1999

installation/software TOR 1.1

In 1999 the “I am the doorway” series of works had it first appearance at “Translation” Kunstförderpreis der Stadtwerke Halle. This particular work is based on the idea to find an expression for a contemporary tattoo. Artist Bernhard Schipper developed a software (TOR) what is able to encode any sentence into a threedimensional bitmap. Later on Berlin based tattoo artist Tobias Werner from Pain & Ink Dept. did the real job by getting the encoded sentence “I am the doorway” into Bernhard Schippers skin. Since the artist isn’t able to stay 24/7 in an exhibition over weeks – the artwork itself has disappeared by intention. The only proof that the artworks exists: a bloody and stained shirt what the artist was wearing after the tattoo session and a cheap framed photography of the fresh tattoo.

Screenshot Decoding
Screenshot Software TOR 1.0 Decoding


*1970 in Bautzen


2004 “Shrinking Cities”, Volkspalast, Berlin
2004 “Headphone-Festival”, Leipzig
2004 “Join the Scapes”, Studio 301 Overtoom, Amsterdam (NL)
2004 “Join the Scapes”, art-gallery Wohlfahrt, Rotterdam (NL)
2003 “Dialog Festival ’03”, Alte Kaserne, Winterthur (CH)
2003 “7. Festival garage”, garage, Stralsund
2003 “Headphone-Festival”, GfzK, Leipzig
2002 “Heisse Räder”, Laden für Nichts, Leipzig
2001 “IBM-Kunstpreis Neue Medien”, Kunstsammlung Gera
2001 “Bestandteil sein”, Ars Lipsiensis Dresdner Bank, Leipzig
2000 “natural_mente” Naturkundemuseum, Leipzig
2000 “I am the doorway – Abendmahl”, art-gallery Interdruck, Leipzig
1999 “Jahresausstellung für nichts”, Laden für Nichts, Leipzig
1999 “CoverCheck”, Laden für Nichts, Leipzig
1999 “Kunstförderpreis Halle”, Villa Kobe, Halle/Saale
1998 “SlashTemp”, art-gallery Mathias Kampl, Berlin
1998 “Lovebytes”, Sheffield (UK)
1997 “Labland”, medialab of art-gallery Eigen+Art, Leipzig
1997 “Leipziger Jahresausstellung”, Leipzig
1997 “S.I.E.D.L.U.N.G. 3000”, VOXXX gallery, Chemnitz
1997 ComtecART, Dresden
1994 “Kriegsschauplätze”, Waschhaus, Potsdam-Babelsberg
1993 “IV – im Auge des Automaten”, Deutsch Sorbisches Volkstheater, Bautzen
1993 “Schmecken Sie die Angst”, Stadtgalerie Saarbrücken
1992 “death is so permanent”, Kunstraum Heidelberg
1990 Deutsch Sorbisches Volkstheater, Bautzen