Eglė Kulbokaitė and Dorota Gawęda “Mouthless” at Fri Art / WallRiss, Fribourg
For their first monographic exhibition in a Swiss institution, Eglė Kulbokaitė and Dorota Gawęda transform and inhabit the spaces of Fri Art and WallRiss to create a fragmented fiction in which eco-feminism theory, urban legends, witches trials, concrete geographical landmarks and impending ecological drama are mixed.
Eglė Kulbokaitė (*1987 Kaunas / Basel) and Dorota Gawęda (*1986, Lublin / Basel) are occupying both Fri Art and the independent WallRiss art space in Fribourg at the same t
In dialogue, two space-times that can however never be experienced together, a process of reconstitution is launched, starting with the construction of a place where the action has already taken place (WallRiss) and moving on to its fictionalised recreation (Fri Art). The interplay between WallRiss and Fri Art suspends geographic coordinates, taking the exhibition onto a speculative plane.
“Mouthless”, then, serves as a station, a hub that makes the rhizomatic tangible. The relationship between form and content is deliberately a-hierarchical. Nothing comes first. There’s no vantage point between matter and information, event and fiction, narration and theory, the body and its environment, the landscape and whoever perceives it. Order is dissolved, the frontier always already contaminated.
“Mouthless” aims at dismissing the concept of point of view, of the division of the world into subjects and objects. The exhibition therefore stages a critical fabulation of our idea of nature, our way of understanding and framing it, our ways of conceptualising it as distinct objects, the body, on one hand, and the landscape on the other.
Rather than observing from one’s respective distance, we’re advised to listen to that which calls out dispersion: of autonomous bodies, of natures and of the exhibition. In the in-between, objects, contributors and images become receptacles of multiple fictions, ghost vehicles of counter-stories. Eastern European legends stand side by side with archives of local witch trials, eco-feminist texts merge into performance of transformed bodies, mutant landscapes call for your attention.
In the first room, a piece of stained glass accommodates an imagery produced by artificial intelligence solicited to recognise a scene. Not far away, a muffled noise reaches us. It makes its way between stuffed animals that children of the former communist block shared with each other beyond the borders of their respective homes. The sound of a tapping at a window, the same window which, at the WallRiss art space, blocks access to the site and divides the scene into two distinct sides: the observer and the observed. In the distance, the cluster of animals forms a planet. From it emanates the continuous murmur of another story to which we do not pay any attention.