Ces mots sont ma chair & mon sang

These Words are my Flesh & my Blood

Diese Worte sind mein Fleisch & mein Blut

CR 25. Year 1971 / 1997


These Words are my Flesh & my Blood.

It is all about the function of time as a factor in arts and culture. Nothing withstands time without change. Even the biblical metaphor, which the title of the work hints at, seems to be challenged. The text is no longer put in marble, but appears on the screen of a computer as a digital flicker.

Volker Rattemeyer 1997. Translated by e_CR editors

The first computer installation Gerz created dates back to 1971. It was made for the Maison de sciences de l'homme in Paris. In it, word and image are so very conceptually interwoven, i.e. the signifiers of the one and the other refer so closely to one another, that they almost seem to precipitate into a pun... In terms of a history of the genre, this work may well be one of the first of the installations using only computer generated images. The technical processes used to produce the work, together with the strict formal logic inherent in that production process, stand in sharp contrast to the allusion to the Last Supper ... which has a colossal existential dimension and forms the basis of the idea of transubstantiation. These two extremely disparate fields are brought into immediate contact and leave the viewer with a curious feeling of loneliness.

Friedemann Malsch 2002



1st version: computer configuration with Viatron System 21 monitor
2nd version: computer configuration with Sony TV monitor, 50 x 65 x 4.5 cm, black wooden pedestal, 130 x 65 x 48.5 cm.

The title appears in French, English and German as a still image on the computer screen.

The first version was made in 1971 and no longer exists.

The German text was used in the performance entitled Schreiben mit der Hand (Writing with the hand) (32).
The reproduction of the first version exists as an edition entitled Diese Worte sind mein Fleisch und mein Blut (These words are my flesh & my blood) (771).

Musée National d'Art Moderne, Centre Georges Pompidou, Paris (video).
Nationalgalerie im Hamburger Bahnhof, Berlin (video).
Fonds d’art contemporain de la Ville de Genève (video).
Kunstmuseum Liechtenstein, Vaduz.


Paris 1971


Wiesbaden 1997. Paris 2002 (video). Genève 2016 (video)


I: Darmstadt 1973, pp. 40-41. Luzern 1979, p. 23. Tel Aviv 1995, p. 18. Wiesbaden 1997, pp. 18, 21

II: Rudel 1, 1997. Rudel 2, 1997

Access general bibliography

My name is Jochen Gerz