Signals, 2010

A new Middle East

After

Mother Tongue

Tal Shoshan 2010-2015

2018

Excerpt from the book: Tal Shoshan in conversation with Hadas Maor

Q: […] Mud Covered Eyes (2015), Knots in Hair (2014), Savage Spirit (2013), Dreaming of Journeys (2010). Your exhibitions have born pronouncedly physical titles over the years. Titles that indicate a present, active physicality, even when it actually poses a hurdle or restriction for the process of action. Even in its actual absence from the showroom. The tension at play between the titles of exhibitions where the body is embroiled in a conflict with itself, or even with its surroundings, and the titles of exhibitions where the mind, the spirit, seeks to break through the corporal boundaries and drift far beyond, charges your work with further awareness to the abiding split between inside and outside, potential and actuality. In your view, how does this tension take form in your objects or your action?

 

A: The exhibitions were given their titles as work on the project drew to an end, and the titles try to convey the essence that can be found in the exhibition, and propose another reading, like the title Knots in Hair: it denotes actual knots, which can echo the frustrating need to comb and undo them: an exasperating, painful situation. But undoing knots is also an effort to undo the mental tangle. This combination, of a physical move that is at once a mental move, points to the work’s mood. Another example: in Mud Covered Eyes the title describes a situation where the eyes are covered in mud, submerged in this murky fluid, and for me this is a state where you can neither see nor breathe, a state of suffocation. The exhibition itself explores this inner state of suffocation, where you can’t see properly, there’s this blur, a suffocated world; the physical state is also a reading of a mental state, and this nexus of physical and mental exists in parallel. […]

 

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