The First Art Newspaper on the Net   Established in 1996 Wednesday, January 27, 2021


Tala Madani's first solo show in Austria opens at Secession
Tala Madani, Shit Moms, installation view, Secession 2019, Photo: Peter Mochi.



VIENNA.- Shit Moms is the title both of Tala Madani’s exhibition at Secession, her first solo show in Austria, and a new body of work. She deals here with concepts of domestic life and, more specifically, the idea(l)s and (corpo)realities of motherhood. While the title refers to the colloquial term for women who in some way fail their job or role as a mother, it also literally designates her approach to the theme: smeared, somewhat shapeless female bodies appear as mother figures made of excrement.

The shit mothers, shown in tender mother-and-child intimacy (At My Toilette #1, #2, #3) – drawing on the Western iconography of the Virgin Madonna and Child (the paradox of virgin maternity being a subject that has attracted Madani’s interest for a long time) – or surrounded, crawled over and jumped on by triples, quads and even larger tribes of infants, inhabit modernist apartments, appear in spot-lit disco halls, and peek at babies playing in abandoned houses. Picturing moments both of togetherness and isolation, they exude a sense of intimacy and human vulnerability:

Pictures of kids patting their shit-covered hands all over the place, coating whole interiors and staining sheets or curtains in careless agility and joyful activity, point to the origins of painting in prehistoric hand prints discovered in caves in Northern Spain, for instance. These are among the earliest examples of humankind’s creative drive, and demonstrate the urge to create, shape, leave traces, and communicate.

With regard to Madani’s focus on domestic life, the motif of the cave seems to be interesting due to its ambiguous associations: the thin line between being perceived as a shelter (a natural, primordial home), a template for exploring and discovering, while being an eerie, dark and uncertain site. The ever-present danger of being trapped can be extended to representations of contrasting domestic realities exemplified in paintings like Shit Mom (A Living Room #2) and Shit Mom (Broken Window).

The cave is also literally a point of reference: In the shadows of Cave Interior (Ancestors), one can see two silhouettes illuminating the wall, throwing light on a huge drawing of a dynamic crowd of people that lurks above them. It’s not quite clear what’s going on: Are they fleeing, worshipping something, or are they part of a collective, ecstatic dance move (a rave?). A variation of this crowd reappears in one of three large-scale diptychs, Corner Projection (Panic). Each diptych is composed of a painting of a projector on one side that seemingly throws its light and projected image onto the adjacent painting. Hung in the corners, these works act as hinges that frame and link the works on show (39 small and intimate to large-scale paintings and 8 animation films), and prominently feature a recurrent painterly topic in Tala Madani’s oeuvre: light and projection.

Some motifs appear in several paintings and constitute a sort of subgroup. They are freely distributed around the space, sometimes next to, sometimes opposite each other, spanning virtual imaginary bridges: Paintings of phantasmagoric, ghostly figures manifest the paradox of concurrent presence and absence, as well as transparency and opacity (Ghost Sitters), while Cum Shot #1, #2 and #3 each shows a man with a rifle in his hands, lying in his cum stain, or pointing the phallic weapon at the ejaculate. Unlike earlier works that predominantly portrayed the male figure (in his modern crisis), here, these are the only paintings that deal with the male and radiate a rather gloomy, auto-aggressive and despaired atmosphere.

Alongside the paintings, a number of recent animation films are presented on monitors (also lending bodies to these digital moving images). Often, the narrative initially unfolds in a casual and matter-offactly manner only to take an unexpected turn, leading to the dissolution of bodily or sexual integrity and physical de(con)struction, for instance in Manual Man or Time. In a disturbing but ferociously funny manner, the animations’ protagonists seem to be trapped in loops of destructive, violent behaviour.

Both her paintings and her animated films operate with a visual language that is often grotesquely exaggerated, drastic and tender, obscene and funny alike. Madani’s oeuvre posits a world in which primal desires are unrestrained by conventions and social norms, while her works are suffused by light that points both in and outward––at human instinct and upended social ritual.

Tala Madani was born in Tehran in 1981 and studied art and political science in the United States. She lives and works in Los Angeles.










Today's News

November 25, 2019

Lion cub mummies feature in huge ancient Egypt find

New exhibition brings together 9 works of Pierre Soulages's iconic Outrenoir series

The Sphinx takes center stage at Penn Museum

Buzz Aldrin-signed Tintin print triples sale estimate

Moderna Museet carries out a major rearrangement of its collection

John Currin's first solo exhibition in Asia set to open at Gagosian Hong Kong

Parrish Art Museum gifted 64 works by Saul Steinberg

Bassins de Lumières: Opening of a new digital art centre in Bordeaux's submarine base

Museum of Contemporary Art Chicago breaks record with $6 million Benefit Art Auction

Skarstedt opens an exhibition of new works by George Condo

Spectacular campaign poster leads Heritage Auctions' Lincoln Specialty Sale above $1.8 Million

Kunsthalle Basel opens annual Regionale exhibition

Colette's Burgundy: Seeking vestiges of a writer's world

Museum of Contemporary Art San Diego opens Nancy Lupo exhibition

Avant Gallery opens the first solo exhibition of artist Felipe Echeverry, AKA Lasso

First solo exhibition by Brooklyn-based artist Darryl Westly opens at PARISTEXASLA

Who needs canvas? In Dakar, street artists express their visions on sides of homes

Unusual items from around the world featured at Turner Auctions + Appraisals

Tala Madani's first solo show in Austria opens at Secession

NSU Art Museum Fort Lauderdale announces new Board Chair: France Bishop Good

Adrián Villar Rojas realises radical installation in Oude Kerk

Adrian Ghenie opens exhibition at The State Hermitage Museum, St Petersburg

2019 East Hampton House & Garden Tour

Yorkshire landscape and coastline focus of new exhibition by artist Melvyn Evans




Museums, Exhibits, Artists, Milestones, Digital Art, Architecture, Photography,
Photographers, Special Photos, Special Reports, Featured Stories, Auctions, Art Fairs,
Anecdotes, Art Quiz, Education, Mythology, 3D Images, Last Week, .

 



Founder:
Ignacio Villarreal
(1941 - 2019)
Editor & Publisher: Jose Villarreal
Art Director: Juan José Sepúlveda Ramírez

Royalville Communications, Inc
produces:

ignaciovillarreal.org avemariasound.org juncodelavega.com facundocabral-elfinal.org
Founder's Site. The most varied versions
of this beautiful prayer.
Hommage
to a Mexican poet.
Hommage
       

The First Art Newspaper on the Net. The Best Versions Of Ave Maria Song Junco de la Vega Site Ignacio Villarreal Site
Tell a Friend
Dear User, please complete the form below in order to recommend the Artdaily newsletter to someone you know.
Please complete all fields marked *.
Sending Mail
Sending Successful