TODAY I AM BORDER
an exhibition by Sonia Távora
The experience of confinement is still a strong presence in our lives and a realitythat could happen again at any time as we are still in the COVID pandemic 19. From inside the house we were led to reinvent our worlds, our daily tasks, our expectations about the future. We had to resize the space, the way we circulate, the paths where we walk. Coping with these weeks of uncertainty took place in many ways, each person has stories to tell. Sonia Tavora returned to painting after more than 15 years old. Her education in architecture led her to create interventions in public spaces and in the exhibition spaces where he exhibited in parallel with his experimentation with printmaking and photography. However, in the first lockdown, the paintings returned to the artist's production routine. Started to emerge paintings in large format of horizons framed by grids, understood so much as a grid (an emblem of Modernism) as a prison.
Painting was once the window of the world between the European Renaissance and Neoclassicism and back to being a window from where we see the pandemic world seems to make sense in a context of abrupt digital turn and impediment of circulation flow. Doors and windows are a recurrent presence in Sonia's work, but these more recent ones bring the element of perspective construction not just as a resource for the illusion of space, but as a metaphor for overcoming, possibility, and hope. Feverishly painting horizons is also an affirmation of the desire for the future. At windows and landscapes produced in the Today am Frontier series are not identical, there are variations of the structure, size, and colors, which gives us a feeling of movement and passage of time. This work is therefore a kind of pandemic diary. The sentences written on some screens reinforce this character: “Today you miss them more”, “we need to dry tears” and “today is more present”.
Painting does not end at the edges of the frame. It continues on the tapes that demarcate the lines of the grids and that receive the layers of paint applied to the canvas. Your inscriptions in the space of the gallery create new horizons and spatialities, such as meridians and parallels. horizons are imaginary lines and many of the subjective and territorial boundaries as well. By shifting the element that structures the image for the wall, the artist reframes time and space, amplifying the discussion of demarcations, boundaries, and immigration. Earth bricks add other words structuring work: desire, dream, and affection. The large panel painted especially for the exhibition represents a luminous twilight, the source of emission of the ribbons/lines. It's with this light we want to enter the second pandemic winter. If today we are borders, we can be bridges in the future.