Developed during her residency at V.O Curations, Sandra Poulson presents a series of new works, which draw from the artist’s personal experience of growing up in Luanda, Angola. For this exhibition, presented across two gallery spaces, the artist took the ever-present dust in the city, central to its geographic location, to reflect on Luanda’s economic, social and cultural landscape. The works are made in fabric, a material seminal in constructing the way our bodies navigate the world, with each element pattern cut and handsewn.
In Luanda, the dust is a stable and reliable resource, while at the same time many jobs and daily activities are focused on the effort to erase any traces of it. Referencing AbdouMaliq Simone in thinking of the dust as an accidental gift for the city, Poulson uses this narrative to think about how something seemingly unwanted is an essential part that shapes the local society. Dust, or more the act of removal of it, is here a source of income, a commodity, a border, and a signifier of economic and social status. It dictates the choreography of urban life through the endless looped activities associated with the impossible task of erasing it.
Structured around moments of meeting and intersecting, Economy of the Dust references the elementary architectural language of Luanda – objects, environments and situations that form the city. Juxtaposing elements of opposite qualities and characteristics, the works share stories of restriction, access, friction and hope.