Esther Ferrer. Group Show: If a Circle Meets Itself. Hollybush Gardens, London. 30.01.15>07.03.2015
If A Circle Meets Itself
Participating artists: Peles Empire, Esther Ferrer, Sunil Gupta, Lubaina Himid Fred Lonidier, Eline McGeorge, Ruth Proctor, Joachim Schmid
“Everything that needs to be said has already been said. But since no one was listening, everything must be said again.” — André Gide ~ Gathering her notebooks, not yet scruffy, not yet worn - she flicked through the pages, glancing at quotes, references and notes. Her objective - to locate, place and frame. Taking matters rather into her own hands the books were snapped shut, and returned to their place in her bag. The time for reflection was over she thought, if there was nothing else to add to them, she’d have to get back to them another day.
~ If a Circle Meets Itself is an exhibition creating conversations across an intergenerational group of artists working with a range of mediums and strategies, including performance, painting and photography. To establish their common ground in relation to an outline or rudimentary character, it is possible to comment that there is a shared engagement and interest in structures and representation; actual structures such as labour movements and the media, through to conceptual and physical interventions into the structures of images themselves. In this way, the exhibition weaves between abstraction and documentary representations, via performance and the figure, both present and suggested. Within this manifold, comment is born of a social reality, that is based on an invisibility of or discrepancy between the experiences of the multitude and dominant cultural or/and state ideologies. Yet as we also know, multitudinous experiences, realities and subverted readings of images, remain present, active, bubbling at work within these inconsistencies. The works here might rupture this appearance of normality, opening up a space to rethink our responses to this reality, our place within it and how we receive and respond to information. And this, all from our disrupted, multiple and dislodged subjectivities.
Esther Ferrer’s practice spans performance, photography, video and installation. Ferrer was a member of the Spanish music and performance group ZAJ from 1967 until it dissolved in 1996. Like Fluxus, ZAJ transformed everyday objects and actions into art. For over forty years Ferrer has been exploring the presence and transience of the body in (social) space. Her performances, in which her body tends to be the central motif, often take the form of incomplete series, which she picks up time and again, sometimes after decades, to explore questions around transformation and the absurdity of life. On show here are self-portraits of the artist with her mouth overflowing with euros. The series can be seen as an immediate comment on consumer society where the mediating role of money has been cut off to highlight the absurdity of capitalism that demands that we consume more and more.