Constant mobility and rapid change in relationships, identities, global affairs and daily life are now an unmistakable part of our lives. Reality seems unable to keep any course for long. Dramatic change is always imminent, training us on the provisional rather than the permanent.
Over two decades ago, Sociologist Zygmunt Bauman used the term “liquid modernity” to describe our restless times. Bauman rejected the idea that the postmodern period had arrived, arguing instead that modernity was intact and that, in its contemporary or “liquid” manifestation, change was the only permanence, and uncertainty the only certainty. To be alive today, two decades later, is to go with the flow or risk drowning. Yet, beneath the liquid’s surface, things linger in the countercurrent, while others are refined by sedimentation on their descent to the bottom. As the currents change and steadily proceed, sediments remain, bearing witness to the turbulence above them.
SEDIMENTS. After Memory interrogates this granular witness, probing four hallmarks of liquid modernity; thwarted revolutions, postcolonial subjectivities, empty consumerism and precarious citizenship. Testing Jean-Baptiste A. Karr’s platitude (“the more things change, the more they stay the same”) against our hypermodern realities, this exhibition agitates the solo/group exhibition distinction, approaching the works in the show as thematic chapters or episodes of a whole.
The exhibition offers multiple perspectives that link Cameroon, Eritrea, Italy, Puerto Rico and Rwanda in the studious exploration of pertinent socio-political and aesthetic issues. SEDIMENTS. After Memoryis an investigation filtered through the distinct artistic practices of Victor Fotso Nyie (Suspended identities), Muna Mussie (ጎዳና ቦሎኛ | اینولوب عراش | Bologna St. 173 (Riverberi Roma), Las Nietas de Nonó (Foodtopia: después de todo territorio), and Christian Offman (Barocco). In yet another turbulent phase of modern history that brings fundamental change in the hy permodern (dis)order of the world we are encouraged to ask, what will remain?
Curated by Johanne Affricot and Eric Otieno Sumba.
Through September, 5th at Mattatoio in Rome, Italy.