Dive into the Dark Dive Box, 2022 - Autostrada Biennale

Dive into the Dark Dive Box, 2022

Artist: Anna Boghiguian

Venue: Hangar 2

History, as the quote goes, “weighs like a nightmare on the minds of the living.” Throughout her work, Anna Boghiguian has never shied away from confronting this metaphoric nightmare, enumerating its many names and faces, interconnections and exchanges, revolutions and dreamlike interregnums. Dive into the Dark Dive Box faces this nightmare head-on. A guillotine, the symbol of the French Revolution as well as the Terror in the final decade of the eighteenth century, is suspended upside down in the middle of the installation. A large mirror platform turns beneath it, strewn with papers. It is bathed in red light and marked with words and phrases written in red ink, a color connotating struggle as well as compassion. An accompanying sound piece, based on a script by the artist, gives voice to modernity’s many political antagonisms and the ways that artistic movements have responded to them. Revolving, like the platform does, can mean cycling through, overthrowing, or returning. Boghiguian evokes these ambiguities along with the empty weight of all that has been displaced in times of upheaval. Does liberation mean taking flight or endless suspense? In any case, her work suggests that history is not a monolith. Installed in the repurposed hangar of a former military base, the platform is surrounded by a number of drawings. With her long-standing nomadic practice of sketching cities, peoples, and stories based on careful research, and with an eye to how trade and materials shape societies, Boghiguian conjures a multitude of movements, sorrows, dreams, and singular lives.

Anna Boghiguian (1946) was born in Cairo and lives and works in Cairo.

Text by Andria Nyberg Forshage

Photo credits: Tuğhan Anıt

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