‘Mr X’

“Mr X has been making cardboard structures [and vehicles], at first in his room and now, with permission, in an empty interview space within the Bethlem Royal Hospital. The temporary cardboard structure, repeatedly modified, documents the endless process of adjustment that occurs as the individual calculates and recalibrates his relationship to the institution. The structure is simultaneously a form of escape, a hiding place, a filter, a second-skin – an alternative way of inhabiting the institution but also a reflection and a critique of its spaces and rules. The structure has a specific use-value for the person who made it. Survival in any institution requires a series of recalibrations, moments when you conform and others when you resist. Making this structure is a response to the question: How do I make this space adapt to me when I am constantly being asked to adapt to it?” Michaela Ross, Bethlem Art Coordinator.