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Enej Gala

Saving chewing gums from mammoth's hair

10 February - 11 March 2023
Opening night Thursday 9 February 18.00-20.00

TJ Boulting and A plus A galleries are pleased to announce the second installment of their collaboration, an exchange project that sees the two galleries host each other's exhibitions in each other's spaces. After TJ Boulting’s solo exhibition of Kate Dunn at A plus A in Venice in 2021, the reciprocal exhibition by A Plus A of Enej Gala will open on 9 February 2023 at TJ Boulting in London. 'Saving chewing gums from mammoth's hair' will be Enej Gala's first solo exhibition in the UK.

The exhibition presents a new series of sculptural groups, formally unconnected yet intimately linked, inspired by puppet theatre. The accompanying text by Treti Galaxie sees two characters, the puppeteer Phil and the puppet Will B. Arrow, interweave their monologues to form a contradictory dialogue about the works on display.

While in figure theatre the cross-bar controlling the puppet has a standard form, usually concealed during performances, here it is presented by the artist in multiple forms that emphasise the difficulty in operating it and the puppeteer's consequent fatigue through its use. The threads, in this case non-uniform and dangling, do not direct any movement, but rather are animated by the passage of the audience.

Three synthetic fur sculptures, shaped like ancient wheelbarrows, lie disjointed on the floor. These tools originally invented to increase human strength, used in agriculture and the military, are crushed by their own weight, and assume anthropomorphic forms. The artificial fur covering them is made of materials derived from petroleum, a substance mainly composed of the dissolution of the bodies of extinct animals. In his research, the artist usually invents new objects and modifies those linked to culture and everyday life, often deliberately sabotaging their form and function. In addition to emphasising unexpected characteristics and hidden potentialities, these transformations are intended to emphasise the impossibility of an equal dialogue between inventor and invented, thus subverting the usual hierarchies. The title of the exhibition suggests itself as a paradigm of this approach: removing chewing gum from a mammoth's hair, not with the intention of preserving the remains of an extinct animal but to preserve parts of a sweet with no nutritional properties and available almost everywhere, a senseless reversal of values and priorities, although not very far from the attitude of most governments towards global warming.

In 'Saving chewing gums from mammoth's hair', puppets from parallel dimensions gather at a puppet fair to choose the most suitable one to bond with, separated from the figures they are supposed to be leading. Three fugitive puppets try to camouflage themselves on the gallery floor, pursued by an army of enraged puppet controls. It is up to the audience to connect the threads of the relationship between the works.

Enej Gala: Current Exhibitions
Enej Gala: Exhibitions
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