In Search of Radical Incomplete, A Perfect Animal Within

In Search of Radical Incomplete, A Perfect Animal Within

Artists: León Ferrari and Ricardo Pons, Nuria Güell, Emre Hüner, Clara Ianni and Debora Maria da Silva, Bouchra Khalili, Erdem Tasdelen, Susanne M. Winterling
Curated by Övül Ö. Durmusoglu

5 June 2015 – 18 July 2015
Opening: 5 June 2015 at 20:00

Venue 1:
Stacion – Center for Contemporary Art Prishtina
Rruga Zija Prishtin p.n. 10000 Prishtinë, Republika e Kosovës

Venue 2:

Emre Hüner: 'Diving Man Diamond Head' at Boxing Club, Mark Isaku Str. n.n. 10000 Prishtinë, Republika e Kosovës
Opening hours:
Every Wednesday, from 19:00 - 20:00

The time-space of narrative is re-formulated by every protagonist who enters it. The story lies in the lapses and differences of recollection. Essentially incomplete, the narrative is a ground to explore and speculate multiple realities, rather than a plot of ultimate truths.

Such an exploration of multiple realities brings forth an ability to critique that regards the field of critique itself as radically incomplete. Critique regenerates itself and escapes being branded as a comfort zone. Its goal is to learn and un-learn incessantly. Like a perfect animal within, which allows us to connect with the matter we live in; it is full of contradictions, selfishness and vitality. This insight gives us a chance to assess marketed notions of completing the self in various fields from politics to algorithms. “In Search of Radical Incomplete, A Perfect Animal Within” is a recollection of poetic visions of reality that open up new and incomplete forms.

The exhibition takes its inspiration from León Ferrari's performance video 'Casa Blanca' (2005) shot in collaboration with Ricardo Pons. Throughout his artistic career Ferrari created different occasions to question his media and methods. In 2004 he once again tested the boundaries and methods of painting by laying live worms on the white canvas. As Pons filmed them, the worms would move and cover the pictorial surface, creating a “quicksand picture.” 'Casa Blanca' (2005) is a development of this experiment that desired 'to transform the most obvious into plastic' in his words. This time Ferrari, known for his anti-imperialist stance, unleashed worms upon a 3D scale model of the White House, the ultimate symbol of power, in an action again recorded in video by Pons. The matter of the earth desecrates the icons of this world.

In her collaboration with Debora Maria da Silva, Clara Ianni searches the boundaries of poetic abstraction in the face of social trauma. 'Apelo' (Plea, 2014) desires to make a universal appeal be heard, to reveal the incompleteness of a history in denial. The film addresses how the military dictatorship remains in Brasil's juridical, political and institutional structure, in the daily experience of violence. The power of the spoken word and the agency it gives to those who formulate and articulate their own position also form the fundamental claim of Bouchra Khalili's 'The Speeches- Chapter One: Mother Tongue' (2012). This first chapter lays the basis of the series with five Parisian immigrants reciting the critical texts of Aimé Césaire, Abdelkrim Al Khattabi, Malcolm X, Mahmoud Darwish, Édouard Glissant and Patrick Chamoiseau in their mother tongues -which are apart from Dari without written scripts.

Susanne M. Winterling's 'Solidaritaet' (2014) is part of her recent work developing image based metaphors on the material forces that make social life real. We immerse ourselves in the world through touch screens and retina displays while witnessing the ways subjectivity is rendered precarious, in political and economic terms. Winterling reflects on what is refracted from the immersive surfaces, that is the collective production of subjectivity. In the layers she overlaps on one another, tactility appears as a primal material force to address the interrelations that make us who we are in activities like sleep and the ways we interact with animals, plants and inanimate matter in the ecological systems we live in. In 'Love is...' (2014) Erdem Tasdelen speaks of intimacy as popular culture's coopted marketing strategy to complete the self, a banal generalization of what is personal. It certainly addresses a generation who experienced their first romances collecting 'Love is...' caricatures from bubble gums and who cannot remember without search engines at the moment. The installation alphabetically listing all the songs in different genres that start with 'Love is...' can be read as a concrete poetry proposal ambivalent enough to become a new personal/collective algorithm.

While Bouchra Khalili thinks on the contemporary personal histories shaped by western modernity's two major problems, the proletariat and the colonial history, Emre Hüner is inspired by western modernity's mysterious architectural traces curious where it did stop working. His 'Diving Man Diamond Head' (2012) is a filmic exercise of translating forgotten archival fragments into new artistic forms in a timeless space. The artist investigates the decaying original model for Shangri La, in Honolulu -the estate of American heiress Doris Duke- from 1937 accompanied by ceramics he made reminiscent of the volcanic tropical island where the estate is located. Shangri-La was built to host a collection of 2500 artifacts Duke collected or commissioned from Iran, Morocco, Turkey, Egypt, Spain and India.

Clara Ianni claims “The irresolute problems of the present are rooted in a systematic denial of the past that remains untold, unsolved, and therefore present.” Nuria Güell's 'Too Much Melanin' (2013) addresses another denial that remains as one of the main problems of Europe. In 2013, the artist asked the Goteborg Biennial to hire Maria with the main duty to play "hide and seek" with the the biennial public. Maria is a political refugee from Kosovo who with her family arrived in Sweden 9 years ago, 4 of them including herself had to live hidden because the government denied their political asylum petition. She used to be a police officer in Kosovo specialised in disappearance and women trafficking. The installation shows the process of the game where Maria was always the person who was hiding and the public remained as the seeker. Once the contract ended María was able to obtain a work permit and therefore became a legal person.

“In Search of Radical Incomplete, A Perfect Animal Within” is part of the annual program of Stacion – Center for Contemporary Art Prishtina.

“In Search of Radical Incomplete, A Perfect Animal Within” at Stacion – Center for Contemporary Art Prishtina is supported by: Soma, Institut für Auslandsbeziehungen Stuttgart, Technomarket, Fundação n Augusto y león Ferrari, Associação Cultural Videobrasil, Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Kosovo, Ministry for Public Administration of the Republic of Kosovo, X-print, Ujë Rugove and DZG.