All the leaves are brown

16 February 2008
Empty Stage - Winter Garden

Roman Ondak Leaves

Something quite Philip K. Dick about this story, with its promise of replacement pets cloned from the tissues of loved-but-lost animals.

Meanwhile, in a beautiful project for Art Sheffield Roman Ondak covered the floor of the city’s Winter Gardens with autumn leaves, confusing first by virtue of switching the seasons and second because  the Winter Gardens is all ever-green trees. The first thing that hit me walking through the space yesterday was the smell. Something deep, earthy, walking-in-the-woods – in any case a far cry from anything you’d expect in there. At the opening lots of people venture stories about reactions to the leaves. Adults don’t notice them so much one person says, it’s more the kids that engage with them, as if the adults don’t have time. It’s true that during the opening event speeches there are a few kids scooping handfuls of the leaves and chasing each other. Someone else describes how one particular shop/coffee stand owner in the Gardens was sweeping away the leaves in a neat circle around her space. It’s good I think, says Roman, she becomes my performer.