believe, Moca toronto
For the inaugural show BELIEVE at the Museum of Contemporary Art in Toronto, Canada, the work underwent several iterations as it was my first museum show. The final pieces were a diptych of paintings called BANNERS FOR NEW EMPIRES as well as a large wood sculpture TALISMAN, made collaboratively with woodworker Yorgo Liapis.
BANNERS FOR NEW EMPIRES (2018)
Forms drawing upon scientific diagrams and science fiction to expand notions of existence in power, mythological deities pull apart any ideas of finite modes of being, and that being occuring in only one dimension. The self-referential and self-generating mythologies behind the beings depicted on the banners can be discussed as alchemical representatives blipping between states of matter, moving parallel to our plane of existence. They serve to open our idea of how it is acceptable to live and be effective or accepted, or to thrive or fail. The works are a continuation of the Positive Forms series, combining dance dynamics with science fiction formal aesthetics to deliver a new inclusive power spectacle to the diasporic future.
The double-throne Talisman, a collaboration with artist Yorgo Liapis, is at once a retelling of history, a fully charged object, and a speculative fiction sculpture. It attempts a rebalancing of energies and a space between binary identities and viewpoints, while at the same time referencing an incident between two cities at the height of Egypt’s empires Luxor (then Thebes) and an offshoot, Amarna. Amarna and its attempts to set itself apart from Luxor suffered damnatio memoriae in a full erasure of the culture implemented by two monarchs to correct growing societal power imbalances perceived to be damaging to the civic structure of Luxor. Amarna was raided and demolished so badly that artifact rubble was discovered following an earthquake hitting Luxor in 1887, used to stuff pillars that had fallen and come apart. The piece Talisman seeks to give the cities a second chance to have a conversation and to be charged from the maker’s hands with power that eases or erases binaries.