Shell Game is a two-person exhibition that brings together for the first time the works of Andreia Santana (Lisbon, 1991) and Anna-Sophie Berger (Vienna, 1989) at Galeria Filomena Soares in Lisbon.
Departing from an invitation from one artist to the other, the exhibition unfolds a perhaps unpredicted intimacy through the exchange of ideas and dialogue between their practices.
Shell Game is set out from already existing artworks that were thoughtfully chosen and placed in the exhibition space, performing a multiplicity of new possibilities from either subtle or tense relationship between both artistic practices.
Andreia Santana’s ethereal and unfathomable works from her Soul House’s series, take a completely new dimension, to when shown previously, by the way they are displayed in relation to Anna-Sophie Berger’s uncanny and stealthy portraits. The capture of the invisible, other forms of life, and afterlife in Santana’s, are to some extent, disrupted by Berger’s exploration of portraiture.
Due to the juxtaposing of both practices, these photographic portraits, that can be interpreted in a myriad of ways, give space to the inherent expression of body-shaped sculptures as receptacles to receive new live forms in a very organic and unexpected way.
Santana’s works attempt to open a space for a counter-discursive power that allows new historiographies, counter-mythologies, and utopias to unfold. Conceived as “mutant elements”, these sculptures reflect on their inherent fluid status and living qualities to linger other types of existence in the future. While, Berger’s portraits act as imaginary conceptions of space for our own projections, operating a sort of semantic trap in which one might start to create analogies between form and titles.
The relations between both practices and the works chosen for this exhibition also allows us to perceive how projects are outspread (like a sketch or a drawing) in contemporary times. Within images, parts of texts, algorithms and the artist’s interface, the exhibition is kept alive as a vibrant world of associations.