Negative Capability Still

GABRIELA VAINSENCHER

Artist Statement

“There is a center, but the center is empty. Either because I have not yet found what belongs in it, or because it is meant to be empty.” (Lydia Davis)


My work is replete with holes and voids, but for me, the empty center is never really empty. Voids are the places into which we project what we know of ourselves, in order to understand the other. My interdisciplinary practice, which includes video, sculpture and photography, is grounded in an exploration of the processes involved in the formation of identity, be they physical, biographical, or emotional. I experiment with materials and languages, interpret psychoanalytic concepts as they pertain to the creative process, and use images and objects as metaphors. I often find that my sculptures become a proxy for the self, creating parallels between how materials and personhood are formed.  I am an immigrant twice-over and the tri-lingual daughter of a psychoanalyst and a translator,always translating and interpreting, while also being aware of the limitations of those processes.

 

For my recent trilingual video, Negative Capability, I interviewed my mother, a Uruguayan psychoanalyst who lives in Israel, about the ways meaning arises from chaos, and how to tell when something must end. Her words became a sound collage which accompanied a filmed performance of a masked female protagonist who manipulates paper and porcelain representations of voids. The porcelain sculptures in the video are are all made from failed, collapsed cylinders. Like identities and bodies, they are shaped by what has happened to them, and carry their wrinkles, scars, and memories within themselves. The photographs in the series “Back Dirt” depict stacks of cut up pages from an archeology book of pre-Minoan artifacts, with holes already cut into them by an unknown person. These assembled images use the shards, holes, remnants and shadows of many ancient vessels to create new, precarious photographic objects, which the eye can’t help but put together and then break apart.

www.gabrielavainsencher.com