Veronica: Proximity As Surface Touch

Aura Satz, Tai Shani

  • 17.4.2019 to 20.4.2019
  • 10:00-17:00h
Tai Shani, Dark Continent: Semiramis, installation view, 2018

The Turin Shroud and the mythology of Saint Veronica (Vero Icona, derived from the Latin vera, truth, and Greek icon, image) serve as a point of departure to explore the effect of surface as “catastrophic, terror-stricken nature […] a space become wall, wall become sky, sky become hole, intimate dizziness (Georges Didi-Huberman and Thomas Repensek, 1984).”

Veronica wiped the blood and sweat of Christ with the Sudarium (sweat-cloth), generating a true likeness, a negative image or imprint. The stained ‘photosensitive’ linen becomes a forensic trace, an index of the absent wound, a contact relic animated by sensual proximity. Drawing on Tai Shani’s ‘Dark Continent Productions’, an expanded adaptation of Christine de Pizan’s proto feminist work ‘The Book of the City of Ladies’ (1405), female saints and mystics are conceived of as the flesh and blood that bridges the divine and the mortal. Porous, corporeal, excessive and erotic, they iterate and realize the sphere of the other, in their word and vision, a world unknown. Psychedelic incarnations of mystics will serve as a framework for unpacking which bodies can speak what, and how.

This workshop led by Tai Shani and Aura Satz explores multiple manifestations of traces that create lesions between the material and imaginary worlds. The artwork as conduit, receptacle of gestures, mediator of voices, wail brought back into speech, marker of imagined pasts and potential futures. Through a reading group, excursions and practical exercises this workshop seeks to generate artefacts that are appointed envoys between this world and one of our making.