phantom limbs exhibition

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PHANTOM LIMBS take shape when an individual continues to be able to feel his or her limbs after they have been amputated. Coupling psychic presence with physical absence, phantom limbs reveal the complex and intertwined relationship between the internal spaces of the mind and the external spaces that we inhabit.

benandsebastian erect elaborately-crafted architectural constructions whose materiality houses inbuilt physical and conceptual absences. In one work, gaping holes in an oversized, overturned staircase make the structure hover between romantic ruin and urban construction site. Such absences create portals that inspire projection, playing on memory, familiarity and longing as ways of filling in the gaps. While taking inspiration from architecture, the duo considers their art as referring to the spaces of the mind, and to the body images through which we negotiate our surroundings. Their works posit the body as necessarily incomplete, continually changing, and forever haunted by its own phantoms.

Rather than considering the museum as a logically ordered collection, benansebastian invite us to view it as a bizarre assemblage of dismembered objects that have been ‘amputated’ from their heterogeneous cultural contexts. Playing close to the institution’s existing typology, they have introduced their works as prostheses to the museum’s permanent collection. A series of nine framed texts accompany the projects, weaving connections between the artworks and the artefacts they are coupled with, using the body as a common framework in a dialogue between artist and museum. Poking out from their glassless vitrines, the artworks pose open questions about themselves and the body of the collection of which temporarily form part.