Arriving into the body, do I feel restless or tired? What holds tension, pain? Then, noticing the quality of the bay, of tidal movement, of weather, as the sun sets into the Baltic Sea. Noticing my body’s native capacity to resonate with other bodies and with the living land. We gather intimately to be with what is difficult, to witness movement and be moved. Listen, what emerges from the yet unseen and unsaid? What are we recovering from and what are we called to recover?
The exhibition softens into the intersectionality of creativity and healing, featuring artists whose practices span visual art, moving meditation, deep listening, contemporary dance, writing, textile, and traditional medicinal knowledge. The title makes reference to an exercise in the book A Widening Field: Journeys in Body and Imagination (2004), composed by dancer, Alexander teacher and craniosacral therapist Miranda Tufnell and installation artist Chris Crickmay. Similarly to the approach put forth in the book, this exhibition considers the creative arts through an emphasis on receptivity, to our bodies and our surroundings. This is an invitation to gather through different registers of visibility, from small scale private moments to those more public.
How to begin to recover from what psychoanalyst and cultural theorist Luce Irigaray refers to, in Through Vegetal Being (2016), as the scorning of the secret process of the living? Disregarding the hidden germination of plants and event that of a human being, whilst favouring brightness and visible productions, has transformed the West into a culture of uprooting, she writes. Imagining below and beyond late capitalist relations, how might we recover an appropriate pace of engagement with ourselves and others? The undercurrent of the curatorial choreography of Let the field of your attention... soften and spread out is one of attentiveness to the ways in which the seasonal transition towards darkness and dormancy inherent to late autumn and early winter in Estonia may affects our bodies, inner lives, and how we come together.
The opening exhibition at Kai Art Center Center is part of the Tallinn Photomonth contemporary art biennial (September 6, 2019 – November 3, 2019). The main program for the biennial includes three internationally-curated exhibitions at Contemporary Art Museum, Tallinn Art Hall, and Kai Art Center, an experimental film program in the Sõprus cinema, and the 9th edition of art fair Foto Tallinn. In addition, Tallinn Photomonth’s satellite program includes many smaller shows in exhibition spaces throughout Tallinn as well as other temporary events.
2019 marks the fifth time that Tallinn Photomonth is taking place. The biennial brings new international exhibitions and events to Estonian audiences and encourages them to critically view today’s visual culture.