2022.04.23 – 2022.11.27
Mire Lee | the 59th Venice Biennale: The Milk of Dreams @ Giardini della Biennale and the Arsenale
Antenna Space is pleased to announce that the artist Mire Lee will participate in the 59th Venice Biennale: The Milk of Dreams. The exhibition will open on April 23, 2022 and last until November 27, 2022.
Mire Lee makes kinetic sculptures that suggest the tension of states of aliveness. Often composed of low-tech motors, steel rods, and PVC hoses filled with grease, silicone, and oil, these animatronic apparatuses at once resemble machines and internal organs. For Lee, the process of creating these sensory objects is itself tied to the body; as she describes it: “I touch and feel the material up-close, put my hands inside any gap, use my teeth to give hold, I bend, stretch and crawl around the scale of the work.”
Inspired by the concept of vorarephilia or “vore” – the fetish of being swallowed or swallowing another alive – Lee’s recent suite of sculptures entitled Carriers (2020) creates situations in which disparate physical materials feed on one another. For The Milk of Dreams, she realises a new work, Endless House: Holes and Drips (2022), that extends the concept of the carrier to a sculptural structure, laced with a pump and ceramic sculptures dotted with holes that ooze liquid clay, a substance that will dry, layer and crack over time.
“These porous objects are made of ceramics that underwent an initial stage of bisque firing, containing many openings that allow other substances to pass through freely. It’s a way for me to imitate the human body and its functions, including metabolism and circulatory system, through sculptures,” Accompanied by benches that double as sculptures, one of which also oozes mysterious viscous liquid, they also suggest the settings in which these bodily functions exist, producing an affective landscape, a house with holes.
“I wasn’t trying to make any direct visual reference to such images. Rather, it was an idea that physical deformity or disability was being used as a mere tool of awareness and comparison to the able-bodied,” she said. “I started thinking that the more disfigured one’s body is, the more people start regarding it as an inanimate sculpture, not as a human form with a soul ― like something essential is missing.”
Text courtesy of Madeline Weisburg and Mire Lee.