Family Plot, 2004, general view (1), Chelouche Gallery, Tel Aviv
Family Plot is Txomin Badiola's first exhibition in Israel. Badiola, born 1957, in Bilbao Spain, and works and lives there till this day, is one of the Spain's contemporary art scene most interesting and outstanding artists. In 2002 a retrospective exhibition “Malas Formas”, in his honour was held at the contemporary art museum in Barcelona -MACBA, and in the fine arts museum in Bilbao (Museo de Bellas Artes de Bilbao).
This exhibition contains sculptures and photographs, from the series Family Plot. This series started originally in 1986 and it had full development at the beginning of the nineties, while the artist spent some time in New York. Since then its subject matter has kept coming out in more recent works like the two sculptures shown in this exhibition.
The title “Family Plot” was initially used in relation to the uncanny (artificial, mysterious, frightening?) feeling arising from the domesticity of certain objects such as: pieces of furniture, windows closets or panelling walls.
Family Plot has two main meanings: a piece of ground, which contains the remains of a family or a chain of (potentially evil) events happening or about to happen in a family.
The first one involves a notion of site, space or place and the second one the idea of narration.
The photographs included in this exhibition approach this narrative aspect in different ways. On one side we have this sort of melodramatic way of staging very codified situations such as those coming from soap operas or genre fictions: Westerns, horror or gangster movies for example. On the other side some photos focus on objects, which are difficult to recognise, and at the same time they involve certain unforeseen and foreboding feeling.
The sculptures include constructed objects and readymade objects like the Basque flag. They are as much the setting of an action taking place in the photograph as the apparent cause of the distress of the character in it. For the characters involved, these constructions are at the same time a familiar place as much as a threatening one.