SERIAL ATTEMPTS: Berti, Ferreira, Gbaguidi. 

25. Jan - 22. Mar 13 / ended news of the world


every Friday and Saturday, 12 to 6pm

Exhibition | Multi-disciplinary | London

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Pélagie Gbaguidi notebook

Pélagie Gbaguidi notebook

curated by Christine Eyene

Serial Attempts is the first presentation of process: immaterial proposal, an ongoing curatorial research project consisting of an evolving assembling of images, texts, and sound pieces focusing on concepts, studies and works-in-progress. The project reflects on the space between the artist's intention and the finished artwork by looking at fragments of the creative process. The title of this exhibition “serial attempts” draws from an expression used by Professor Hans Belting in the introductory chapter of The Invisible Masterpiece (1998, transl. 2001) in which he discusses unrealisable aspirations in art. Three artists have been selected for this showcase Cristiano Berti (Italy), Cecilia Ferreira (Mozambique/South Africa) and Pélagie Gbaguidi (Benin/Belgium), each represented by one piece or body of work.

Berti’s sound installation Happy (2004) is a work begun in 2002 that initially comprised of a video and photographic "mapping" of Happy's body. Berti, however, chooses to remove the photographic evidence and only displays the protagonist’s voice recorded in studio in December 2004. Happy is heard narrating the story behind the scars marking her skin, in Edo, one of Nigeria’s languages. The public is led to draw on their senses to reconstruct the shapes and depths of the scars and imagine the tactility of the skin while being immersed in the musicality of a foreign language.

Cecilia Ferreira’s The Chaos Within (2009) is the artist’s first video-experiment. Filmed with a webcam, the piece presents the successive stages of creation of the artist’s self-portrait, leading to the destruction and desecration of both the artwork and her own image as part of the creative process.

Pélagie Gbaguidi’s series Conciliabule (2003-2006) is shown here as images from her notebooks. Eight “captures” have been selected to reveal the artist’s thoughts through annotations and sketches seemingly jotted as spontaneous creative impulses. This body of work, first presented alongside the artist’s notebooks in the exhibition “En Toute Innocence”, Galerie Imane Farès, Paris (2011), gave the impetus to “process: immaterial proposal” which object is to apprehend art, notably produced by African artists, beyond fixed narratives, representations, and identities.

Serial Attempts is curated by Christine Eyene and organised in collaboration with Making Histories Visible.

Christine Eyene is an art historian, critic and curator practicing in the field of modern and contemporary art from Africa and its Diasporas, with a particular interest in representations of the body and gender narratives. She was co-curator the 10th edition of the Dak’Art Biennale (2012) and curator of the African selection of the 3rd edition of Photoquai – Biennial of World Images (2011). Her other projects include “Reflections on the Self – Five African Women Photographers”, a Hayward Touring Exhibition (2011-2013). She has recently been appointed Guild Research Fellow – Contemporary Art, at the School of Art, Design and Performance, University of Central Lancashire (UCLan).

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