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Will the 21st century be "cannibal"?

Contemporary Art |  » All Cannibals » , an exhibition conceived by Jeanette Zwingenberger for two different private foundations :
La Maison Rouge in Paris and Me Collectors Room Berlin, brings to light a bloody subject, buried deep in our collective memory.

Wangechi Mutu, The Partician New, 2004, technique mixte sur mylar © Courtesy Galerie Zidoun
Wangechi Mutu, The Partician New, 2004, technique mixte sur mylar
© Courtesy Galerie Zidoun

Following a quasi scientific approach, the German curator constructs her premise on an historic, artistic, anthropological corpus : Artists work independently of one another on the concept of « incorporation » , using the ideas of : the other, the foreigner, the myth, the real, damnation, symbolic rituals, children’s fairytales, terrifying visions, raw flesh, the consumable and indigestion.
The exhibition’s springboard is an article by Claude Levi-Strauss « We are All Cannibals » that appeared in La Republica (10/10/93) in which he describes cannibalism as the concern of all societies. In its broader sense, cannibalism is ingesting a substance of the same species. And so, sexuality, birth, or suckling would be considered primaeval forms of it. In the realm of science, organ donation, transplants, blood or growth hormone transfusions are contemporary forms of cannibalism with a healing purpose. This bold theme testifies to imaginations that swing between dark fears and survival, the source of being alive. It is interesting to note that it is a younger generation of artists who tackle the question, who bring it to light in this period of profound global change, of destruction, of hardening darkness.
To be cannibal or not to be cannibal, that is the question.

Nina Rodrigues-Ely
Publié le 12/02/2011
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Version française

Wangechi Mutu, The Partician New, 2004, technique mixte sur mylar © Courtesy Galerie Zidoun

Wangechi Mutu, The Partician New, 2004, technique mixte sur mylar
© Courtesy Galerie Zidoun

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