Amalia Vekri – On the Risings and Settings of the Stars

Amalia Vekri’s latest works, paintings and sculptures, feature a blue, female contortionist forming different constellations with the stars. In ‘Gold II’ the figure assumes the backfold position, bending backwards at the waist while standing. In ‘The Oracle’ she assumes a chest stand. These strained, spectral positions which appear to involve the dislocation of a joint (they don’t actually involve a dislocation) evoke different emotional states; efforts to negotiate with larger forces that infect our human-scaled lives in unsanctioned ways. The positions read like spells performed by the body. It is dark existential work and at the same time, a humorous dig at the troubled history of sexualising the female nude. These positions could also be read as psychological tributaries of various death/sex phantasies, the perennial witch burning at the stake or the female lead in a Tarantino movie typically sustaining a vicious beating. More so, they feel like efforts to resume control over one’s destiny. Rendered blue the oracle is constituted as beyond human, afforded a privileged existence akin to the pigment’s (ultramarine) economically privileged history.