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leonor antunes in talismans

fondation calouste gulbenkian - paris
march 9 - july 1, 2018
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leonor antunes, whitechapel gallery, london, 2017.

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leonor antunes, whitechapel gallery, london, 2017.

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leonor antunes, whitechapel gallery, london, 2017.

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leonor antunes, whitechapel gallery, london, 2017.

The desert between us is nothing but sand takes the form of an exhibition, lectures, performances and projections. This project focuses on three main themes: the incommensurability of time following turmoil, reparation and the talisman.

 

In this exhibition, we view the apocalypse as something which may be behind us, as the Yanomami shaman Davi Kopenawa describes in his book The Falling Sky. This concept is linked to the idea of internal collapse or the history of a people who must survive destruction, and may be extended to the survivors of nuclear disasters.

 

Here, the talisman is the link between heterogeneous elements which hold unique meaning for the person composing them. Rather than its esoteric nature, it is its significance as a composite object which is of interest to us. Nor are we concerned with its ability to wield power over people in the name of superstition, justifying acts of oppression and violence. Instead, we consider the talisman’s capacity to create stories, links which help individuals to manage the world and to create new worlds. In this context, the talisman is a pretext by which to adopt the concept of a non-Western object as a basis for reflection on art, an object of questionable value, a volatile impact, which is not necessarily controllable by the forces of power and which, by its very nature, is able to move with its owners. This mobility gives rise to transformation of the object’s interpretations and meanings.


 

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