Amalia Pica at Pica
Amalia Pica has always been fascinated with the nuances of language as well as ephemeral meanings that are lost in translation. In 2013, the Argentina-born, London-based artist showed the installation A ∩ B ∩ C ( A intersection B intersection C), which refers to the ways in which Argentina’s military junta banned Venn diagrams during the 1970s, perceiving them as potentially subversive. The work, which saw performers manipulate translucent shapes to recast the intersection as a symbol of collaboration and community, is the perfect example of the artist’s knack for subverting communication tools to powerful effect.
Please open hurry, Pica’s new show at the Perth Institute of Contemporary Art (PICA), extends the artist’s career-long consideration of language and its attendant slipperiness. The show, which follows an earlier presentation at the Institute of Modern Art, Brisbane, revolves around Pica’s 2014 experience of observing the communication tools used by Nigeria’s great apes – primates that demonstrate powerful cognitive facilities, embracing sign language and complicated pictorial symbols to respond to commands in the manner of humans. Her research has set the stage for a new suite of works including two groups of cast objects, and a large-scale sculpture featuring 254 handmade collages and video works created with filmmaker Rafael Ortega. Please open hurry is curated at PICA by Eugenio Viola and developed in partnership with IMA, Brisbane and The Power Plant, Toronto with the support of the Keir Foundation. It opens August 4 and shows until October 7, 2018.
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