WENDELIEN VAN OLDENBORGH. TONO LENGUA BOCA
4 OCTOBER 2019 - 5 JANUARY 2020
OPENING 3 OCTOBER 20:00
CURATED BY ANNA MANUBENS
tono lengua boca brings together a major part of the moving image production by Wendelien van Oldenborgh (Rotterdam, Netherlands, 1962) for the first international retrospective of her work. In three juxtaposed words the title disassembles the elements that together would configure a voice. The tone, recognisable from afar but yet without semantic content; the tongue, a visceral organ but also a political-linguistic construct, and the mouth the location of embodied enunciation.
The exhibition focuses on the use of sound and polyphony that runs across the artist’s practice. Yet, not only as something that she does in her films, but also as something that does her; something that shapes her. We are looking at the role assigned to other voices, as much as at an artistic trajectory in which finding one’s own voice involves letting in that of the other. Here, the place from which to speak with legitimacy is found by multiplying the voice, by making it other, in a form of intentional self-estrangement.
Van Oldenborgh does not direct films, rather she sets them up as a framework of hospitality in which to invite and mobilise subjects and stories for a collective elaboration or revision of sense-making. At times, messages and texts from the past cut through bodies in the present giving rise to a sense of estrangement, conflict and violence. At times the participants literally and metaphorically distance themselves from the script, weighing up their capacity to embody it. The processes of dialogued interpretation are ways to conjure up and exorcize colonial, ideological, racial and class discursive inheritances that would otherwise keep on reproducing themselves inadvertently.
tono lengua boca underscores the efficacy of strategies related to speech, to the allocation of voices, to the choral construction of narratives and to the non-naturalisation of the place from which we speak. In the artist’s work there is an obstinate insistence on letting go. On the one hand, in her films, as a refusal to control the voices and bodies and, on the other, in her own agency, by disposing of the univocal monotone speech as a means to reach an artistic, ethical and political enunciation.
3 October 9:30 pm
4 October 6:00 - 8:00 pm
Performative visits to exhibition: Sundays at 18:30.
A catalogue will be published to coincide with the exhibition.
With the support of: Mondriaan Fund and Amigos CA2M
With the collaboration of: Cervezas Alhambra.