Yinka Shonibare CBE RA features in 'Interior Infinite'
The Polygon Gallery presents ‘Interior Infinite’, a celebration of radical togetherness and unique self-expression. Curated by Justin Ramsey, the group show explores carnivalesque expression as an act of resistance against the status quo. Interior Infinite features a group of 15 international artists whose works span photography, video, performance, and sculpture, including Nick Cave, Dana Claxton, Zanele Muholi, Aïda Muluneh, Skeena Reece, Yinka Shonibare CBE RA, Sin Wai Kin, Carrie Mae Weems, and Zadie Xa.
“Whether through social media feeds or identity politics, we are constantly told that the ‘self’ is a true, immutable thing — this is a vast oversimplification,” says Ramsey. “Every single person is a work in progress, with the potential and the courage to change and be changed. Interior Infinite speaks to the capacity for an individual to break free of normative limitations that are defined by a white supremacist, male chauvinistic, heteronormative lens. The exhibition draws attention to the fact that these so-called norms are far from the lived experiences of many people, and that ‘the way things are’ can change with social imagination. We have collectively imagined our present injustices into being; we can just as easily imagine a better, fairer, more inclusive way forward.”
‘Interior Infinite’ takes its title from Russian philosopher Mikhail Bakhtin’s ‘Rabelais and His World’, which analysed the power of folk traditions such as Carnival and the grotesque as methods of subversion through humour and chaos. Predominantly featuring portraiture, with an emphasis on self-portraiture, the exhibition focuses on costume and masquerade as strategies for revealing, rather than concealing, identities. Across these works, disguise functions as an unmasking, as artists construct their own images through adornment in order to visually represent embodied experience, memory, and understanding.