(ab)normalities investigates the possibilities of challenging current social, political and aesthetic notions of what one submissively or actively accepts as normative. The exhibition brings together a selected group of five emerging female artists that depart from a certain state of discomfort and displacement in relation to current precepts and engage in their active redefinition.
This exhibition encourages the viewer to embark on a journey against the conventional, examining issues of identity, gender, sexuality and its manifestations in the everyday. However, the works presented are not intended as final proposals but rather as feelings of unease, as a means to achieve new and complex forms of perception and interpretation.
The group show features photography, video, collage, installation and performance. The works are visceral manifestations, often exploring obsessive practices and ambivalent notions of oddity and awkwardness. In their own terms, they take a provocative stance and stimulate inquisitive responses by shaking up predefined notions of normality and order.
The viewer is encouraged to reflect on what ignites the creative process and contributes to the critical dialogue. By establishing a channel between the agents of meaning and the critical audience, the notion of the ‘normative’ could perhaps be expanded to contain new formulas and the relative discomfort of the artists’ position be put at ease.
In this re-articulation of ideas, Céline Bodin (France) confronts young women with the weight of fate and society’s expectations of them. Jade Ann Williams (U.K.) explores the space the female body occupies in the era of social media; Megan Sharples (U.K.) blurs gender, encouraging the breakdown of the gender binary. With the ongoing series ‘fatale femininity’, Meral van de Velde (The Netherlands) interrogates the concept of womanhood and its intricate connections with sexuality and sensitivity. Natalie Ramus (U.K.) wanders between the private and the public to challenge taboos and predefined notions associated with the female body.