By Laura Cottingham
“Brandt’s So Help Me Peter…, inspired by Hannah Wilke’s So Help Me Hannah, is a series of six black and white photographs that feature the artist naked carrying a gun; crouched defensively; tumbling on a bare floor; aggressively spinning on his side; and stabilizing himself with his forearms on the ground as if preparing to re-face an attacker. Each frame captures the artist in motion, like stills from a motion picture. Revenge, betrayal, outrage, victimization, offense, defense, anger, physical and mental anguish are communicated in the range of feelings presented (in a billboard project for Poland the work was censored, because of the visible penis). The artist is remembering, replaying (in order to alter the outcome?), an attack he suffered in Rome in 2002 at the hands of strangers. The raw physicality of So Help Me Peter… is emotionally charged not only by its traumatic basis in the artist’s experience as a victim of a violent physical attack, but also by the emotional betrayal he subsequently suffered at the hands of friends. He says, “I want to kill everyone who has done injustice to me! …I also see the pictures as the role of men in society, being the victim of one’s own and the culture’s construction: A real masculine man is aggressive, it’s part of the masculinist law.” Like Wilke, Brandt relies on an artistic process that is simultaneously informed by art, experience, intellect and feeling”. (Laura Cottingham, The Other Venus – Hannah Wilke and Peter Brandt, extract from the catalogue Peter Super-T-Art, page 40 – 41, 2007).
So Help Me Peter…6 B/W Lambda prints 70 x 46,50 cm. 2005