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Institutional Ghost

 

In 1554 the city of São Paulo was founded in Brazil. It is considered to be the 12th largest populated city on the planet. Among other things the city has a rich art culture with numerous cultural institutions. Jac Leirner, a Brazilian artist and sculpture, from São Paulo, is currently exhibiting the Institutional Ghost at the IMMA here in Dublin 8.

Originally a graduate in visual arts she has exhibited over 20 exhibitions worldwide and also participated in the Venice and São Paulo Biennale in the 80’s and 90’s. This will be Leirner’s first solo exhibition in Ireland and runs from the 14th to the 5th of June 2017 in the Courtyard Galleries of the IMMA.

“It is exciting to have the work of Jac Leirner at IMMA, as she saliently references the Brazilian legacy of constructivism and appropriates her works with this vibrant history into visually compelling sculptures and installations that demand to be seen and enjoyed,” Rachel Thomas the IMMA Curator said about the exhibition in a recent press release.

The sculptures and installations are made  from everyday materials that she re-uses for her artworks. Some of these materials include luggage tags, cigarette rolling papers, drugs and plastic rulers. They include the message that these materials are to remain here for infinity as they take on a different purpose and role.

Works from Leirner’s Junkie series will also be exhibited, they include uv inkjet prints, miniature figures out of lumps of cocaine and works on paper, telling the story of her own drug addiction and experiences thereof.

Leirner who is a smoker, puts her addiction and consumption of it in her installion Skin (Raw King Size Slim) to good use. For this installation she used 297 aligned cigarette rolling papers (the silk pack) and stuck it to a wall.

Hip Hop Around the Fireplace (2017) and Cloud from the Corpus delicti series (Body of Evidence – 1992-3) are among the exhibited installations. Cloud is built out of materials Leirner salvaged from planes during her travels and include air-sickness bags, earphones, luggage tags, astrays (when smoking was still permitted on airplanes) and boarding passes.

This all seems a bit criminal – drugs and stolen paraphernalia – and surely deserves institutionalization, but what happens if the criminal is merely a ghost?

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