Narratives of displacement

Catalina Swinburn

Tunis : 01 July 2018 - 31 July 2018

Press Release

The starting point of the exhibition is an investigation related to archaeological pieces that were taken from their original place, and travelled to different institutions around the world to be exhibited as a power emblem. In this perspective, the artist collected a myriad of heteroclite images of ancient pieces that were subsequently folded and woven all together in workshop exercises engaging several people. Just like the numerous hands caught into repetitive gestures in the workshops, images are important when approached in their totality and unity. They are a sort of patchwork fabrics made possible only through a collaborative work echoing the daily practices and social interactions involved into the complex process of reconstruction. These skins – with their various folds and contingent aspects – are the place of fissures and traces bearing witness to memory. Nationalism requires the elaboration of a real or invented remote past. This work on paper considers how archaeological data and music are manipulated for nationalist purposes, and it discusses the relationship of archaeology to nation-building. The political uses of archaeology are also reviewed for the construction and articulation of identity.