ARTIST WALKABOUT: DeCOMPOSITION Resisting Repair: Art & Psychoanalysis

By Andy Milner Cohen
Sat, Feb 13. 8:00AM - 11:00AM
Constitution Hill (South Africa), Johannesburg

Join Andy Cohen for a 1 hour walkabout discussing her Master of Arts in Fine Arts by Research exhibition titled DeComposition Resisting Repair: Art & Psychoanalysis. The exhibition is the start of looking at a lifetime of relationships with her Objects – both real and created - and is an attempt to re-think her lifelong rapport with art making in relation to lived experience. ‘Composition’ (to Cohen) calls to mind a Fine Art structure, signifying a need for a resolved aesthetic. The ‘De’ refers to the challenge of this construct and plays on the word ‘decompose’, calling to mind ideas of decay, degradation but also to fertilizer and fertility. The exhibition draws on the psychoanalytical idea of breaking down, dusting away and going deeper in search of other meanings. The show takes place at Constitution Hill - a living transitional space in a South African context - and is to be housed in ‘Ramparts’, the old reception area where prisoners were incarcerated. This embodies the tensions that the artist is investigating parallel to her artistic practice, where through her own experience in psychoanalysis, personal politics and apprehensions are explored emotionally, and then transferred to the studio, culminating in the physical forms on exhibition. The conflicts of the space mirror the extent of therapeutic and creative interventions the artist is willing to make in order to finally make the unconscious conscious. This in relation to the location of the exhibition begins to contextualize the work as the breaking down of powerful preconceived mindsets, in an effort to repair the past and gain contained relational reconciliation.

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