“Art is not a Mirror. Art is a translation of that which you do not know.”
—Marlene Dumas, 2003
There is something deeply satisfying in (re)searching and (un)seeing the (re)presentations of bodies, gender and sexualities within art and/or media more broadly. But some of us—those for whom media has failed or fails to act as a mirror—we hunger for alternatives to normative narratives and forms of representation. One could argue, art need not be a mirror, but can rather act as site for translating physicality or bodies, which at times defy understanding.
As artists or makers of meaning, we can take up our own strategies for depicting self-constructed versions of identities and/or performances of “self.” The artists included in Representation Matters: Conversations on Identity and Community, take markedly different approaches to concerns around representations and positionality within Queer communities. The show provides starting points for conversations around the roles of individuals within collectives and/or what some might call “the LGBTQAI community.” As the many letters of the acronym suggests, this “community” is made up of various sub-groups, or what could be called “fragments.” This show aims to assemble these fragments into a sort of curated community of selves and strategies.
There are no answers, just questions. There are no solutions, just strategies.