The Body Is No Longer a Dwelling - a critics statement by Professor of Anthropology Michael Taussig from Columbia University in NYC on Ioana Anagnos Photography
Die Ausstellung von Ioana Anagnos ist ab 8. September in der Galerie LIK in Wien zu sehen.
Man Ray made gorgeous photographs of female butts and breasts, photographs that in changing the register of anatomy, surrealized reality. Almost a century later, Ioana Anagnos also makes art out of body-parts but does something very different. Her photographs are of her own body-parts and wholes in relation to buildings and parts of buildings, while an almost sinister use of light and color arrests time in sad, contemplative spasms of trepidation. There seems a history here of bodily desire and mutilation mixed with wonder as the natural god-given body addresses the built environment of the architect seeking redress if not cure through the matching and mismatching of the imagery of parts and wholes, of bodies as much as of buildings.
Unlike the crisp black and white images of early Surrealist photography, Anagnos’ photographs tend to distort the image. Either the close-ups are too close or blurred and masking is indicated, notably by the images of rumpled plastic and of the lattice-like architectural construction suggestive of veiling, accentuated by hollows made of light and shade.
Taken as a whole, the collection of thirty two photographs is a jumble, not a structure. The bits and pieces do not add up. The wound to wholeness is grievous. The architectural images are of tiny details, ugly walls, and two complete buildings. A mish-mash, as are the body images, more abject than erotic.
In short, the body is disfigured and along with it so is architecture.
Disfiguration injects a strange energy into the show. The wound is grievous and therefore the images bounce back with life. We talk of “proprioception” which refers to the human body’s innate sense of its place in space, especially the spaces in one’s dwelling. There is this potential bond between body and architecture which has a mystical side. But what happens when the bond is torn and proprioception loses its compass and the body itself is no longer a dwelling?
High Falls, NY, July 10, 2016
Michael Taussig (born 3 April 1940, Sydney) is an Australian anthropologist, born in Sydney. He completed secondary education in 1958 at North Sydney Boys High School and then earned a medical degree from the University of Sydney, received his PhD. in anthropology from the London School of Economics and is a professor at Columbia University. Although he has published on medical anthropology, he is best known for his engagement with Marx's idea of commodity fetishism, especially in terms of the work of Walter Benjamin. He won a Berlin Prize 2007 from the American Academy in Berlin. Quelle: Wikipedia