melanie bonajo: When the body says Yes

Friday 26 July – Sunday 20 October 2024
melanie bonajo, When the body says Yes, still Big Spoon, 2022, Courtesy the artist and AKINCI | melanie bonajo: When the body says Yes | Friday 26 July – Sunday 20 October 2024 | IMMA | Image: melanie bonajo, When the body says Yes, still Big Spoon, 2022, Courtesy the artist and AKINCI | video still; view from above of 18 mostly or totally naked people lying on their right side spooning each other, forming a sort of caterpillar shape across the image; they are lying on the pink sheets of mattresses shoved together
Reception Thursday 25 July, 6 – 8pm • Artist’s talk with melanie bonajo at 5:30pm; booking required

When the body says Yes is an immersive video installation by melanie bonajo (they/them), a queer non-binary Dutch artist, filmmaker, sexological bodyworker, and somatic sex coach and educator. The installation, originally commissioned by the Mondriaan Fund for the Biennale Arte 2022, is part of the artist’s ongoing research into the current status of intimacy in our increasingly alienating, commodity-driven world. For bonajo, touch can be a powerful remedy for the modern epidemic of loneliness. 

Through their videos, performances, photographs and installations, bonajo examines current conundrums of co-existence in crippling capitalistic systems, and address themes of eroding intimacy and isolation in an increasingly sterile, technological world. 

They research how technological advances and commodity-based pleasures increase feelings of alienation, removing a sense of belonging in an individual, and their works present anti-capitalist methods to reconnect, explore sexualities, intimacies and feelings. Their experimental documentaries often explore communities living or working on the margins of society, either through illegal means or cultural exclusion, and the paradoxes inherent to ideas of comfort with a strong sense for community, equality, and body-politics. 

bonajo worked with a curatorial team consisting of Orlando Maaike Gouwenberg, Geir Haraldseth and Soraya Pol to develop When the body says Yes which represented The Netherlands at the 59th Venice Biennale in 2022. The scenography for the installation, both at the Venice Biennale and in subsequent iterations, including at IMMA, has been developed in collaboration with Théo Demans. 

melanie bonajo was nominated for the Nam June Paik Award (2018) and the Prix de Rome (2017) and won the IFFR Tiger Award (2016).  

IMMA Talks presents a conversation with melanie bonajo and collaborator Pawel CHILL Dudus on Thursday 25 July at 5.30pm. Two artist led workshops with bonajo/Skinship Collective take place on Saturday 27 July exploring Consentship (10am) and Collective Body Spells (2pm). See full details and booking links below.

When the body says Yes was shown at FOMU, Antwerp, Belgium (2023) and KUMU Art Museum, Tallinn, Estonia (2024). melanie bonajo is represented by Akinci, Amsterdam. 

melanie bonajo, When the body say Yes,  has been made possible with the generous support of the Mondriaan Fund.

Image: melanie bonajo, When the body says Yes, still Big Spoon, 2022, Courtesy the artist and AKINCI
Friday 26 July – Sunday 20 October 2024
IMMA
Royal Hospital, Kilmainham
Dublin 8
Telephone: +353 1 612 9900
www.imma.ie
Opening hours / start times:
Tuesday 11:30 - 17:30
Wednesday 11:30 - 17:30
Thursday 11:30 - 17:30
Friday 11:30 - 17:30
Saturday 10:00 - 17:30
Sunday 12:00 - 17:30
Admission / price: Free
Bank Holidays open 12:00 – 17:30.

 
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