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Lévesque quotes a poem by Lamartine to show that, from century to century, idealism collides with the notion of borders, the historical factor in wars and deaths. His text, inhabited by the figures of Gauguin, Camus, Barrès, Jacques Parizeau, Pessoa, Koltès, Rimbaud, and Ariel Sharon, is pessimistic. He notes that borders—geographical and mental, cultural and psychotic, technological, financial—are still tightly closed. The way to neutralize their lethal power, he writes, is to always feel and put oneself on the other side—something that has its own risks and perils.
A product of Yoon's continuing engagement with landscapes characterized by "condensed" meanings and connotations, this project places representations of the tourist destination of Prince Edward Island and its associations of "home" and universal "homeland" within an international, post-colonial context. A Vancouver-based artist of Korean background, Yoon intervenes in images of landscape, employing the tourism aesthetic itself to take apart this representation and make visible its veneers. As she manipulates myths of "Islandness" to reveal their exclusions, in the space that appears between surface and reality she also reveals the potential remaking of memories, traditions, and cultural identities for a diversity of social subjects.
According to Jewish law, complete rest is obligatory during Shabbat. The ban on working includes carrying any objects (keys, a book, a bag) outside the home. However, according to the Torah, a village or city surrounded by a wall with gates is considered a private domain. Today, it is an accepted practice to "build" eruvim using wire, string, or galvanized-steel ropes to form an imaginary wall. I asked residents of Jerusalem, Israeli and Palestinian, to take me to a public space that has, in their eyes, a private character.
Imbued by the question of identity and addressing mainly Western viewers, Shirin Neshat's production constantly negotiates the variety of perspectives (masculine, feminine, feminist, Middle Eastern, Western, Asian) that come together at the base of "Moslem" identity. This negotiation, however, strategically maintains the Eastern-Western dualism. The specificity of Neshat's work resides in the conjunction between the identity displacement of Islamic women, on the one hand, and the fixed identity of the Western viewer, on the other hand. The question underlying this text is thus the following: How does Neshat's work articulate the antinomy of change and reification?