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Performances

Tuesday, 11 March 2014 11:59 Written by Jessica Berlanga Taylor

for the exhibition Domestic Affairs.
Mexico Space, Montreal, Quebec, Canada. December 2011.


The work chosen by María Ezcurra for this exhibition involves a series of poetic negotiations exploring the tensions between the intimate and the public, in additional to her aesthetic and political concerns. Using cloth and other soft material, the artist addresses the idea of positioning and the mental, physical and emotional consequences resulting from the displacement between and through intellectual, spatial and psychic spaces.

Ezcurra’s sculptures, crafted at home and intimately related to her role as wife, mother and artist, stretch from the domestic to the urban space, highlighting the fact that the personal is also public and therefore political.

By sharing her own situation and confessing her anxieties, the artist invites us to do the same, to understand our own potential to create meaning and produce a collective social organization, connected through shared experiences. We are all composed of our own social experiences, which inform our minds and bodies wherever we are, in both domestic and public spaces.

By referring us to the physical, discursive and affective spaces we occupy, Ezcurra invites us to reflect on the difficulties implied by those constant, diverse negotiations on who and where we are and what we are doing. I shouldn't, 2011, consists of a series of cloth cylinders that form a column surrounded by spare material, on which she embroiders verbs such as exist, like, oppose, need, reject, love and benefit. In a society structured by gender differences, these actions have historically been denied to women, restricting the territories in which their desires can be expressed. Flesh and Blood, 2011, is a second series of circles of red and black cloth. Grace, Hope and Prudence, like Soledad, Consuelo and Socorro (Solitude, Consolation and Succor), are female names and a series of virtues and values expected of women. Skillfully playing with her position within a given social structure, she keenly seeks to question established social standards and her own responsibility in reinforcing these conventions.

The works displayed in Domestic Affairs, like Ezcurra’s previous art work, invite the viewer to examine how we are conditioned to produce and consume ideas, values and emotions. By altering this dynamic with work that acts within our bodies, using color, tactile contrasts, text and various spatial formations, she produces uncertainty and offers opportunities to resist and redesign our individual and collective existence. Ezcurra shows that if her own experiences, which include defending her decisions as a wife, mother, artist and other complex identities can create meaning, our experiences also have a poetic and political significance.

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