digital collage, projection, photography, 2022
In writing, the opposed positions of the colonizer/colonized binary are distinguished merely by their end letters, 'r' and 'd.' Merging them visualizes the observation that the affairs of colonizers and colonized are necessarily intertwined, overlapping, and interdependent (Edward Said, Culture and Imperialism, 1994). Other active/passive-tense binaries for which both the minimal written distinction and Said's argument hold are exploiter/exploited, offender/offended, and also the apparently less contested lover/loved.
The work aims to raise awareness for contexts conceived through opposing active/passive-tense pairs and questions the possibility of clear categorizing in general and binaries in particular. In doing so, it strikes a blow for concepts such as ambivalence, hybridity, and undecidables that stand for the evasion of clear demarcations and divides. The figures created by blending the letters 'r' and 'd' in different fonts are meant to puzzle the viewer and encourage leaving familiar paths of classification to arrive at alternative readings of "r/d affairs."
Projecting the r/d figures onto a globe and onto a quilt are metaphors for the pervasiveness of r/d affairs in global and local contexts, public and domestic spheres. The distortion and texturing of the figures visualizes the dependence of the actualizations of a universalized r/d concept on the time and site-specific circumstances.
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