September 22 — December 10, 2017
[En anglais] In Hannah Black’s site-specific installation at Chisenhale Gallery, there is a “situation.” The situation looms large: it is multi-vocal, fluid, collective, individual. It is literally bound and dispersed, at once legible and illegible. The situation arises within and without many contexts — some of which are made materially explicit, some of which haunt the margins of Black’s work. Some Context is both a series of objects and a text; together and apart. In the centre of the room, a stack of 20,000 books forms a large, irregular shape. The Situation is the title of the book — fragmented narratives and ruminations compiled by Black through a series of conversations with peers. “I’m pretty sure there’s a situation. But do you think there’s only one situation?” asks one voice; “What’s hard is describing the situation,” states another.
Some contributors are named, while others are blacked out, as are portions of the text — an act that both interrupts and enriches the space of reading, the perverse pleasure of language to simultaneously make meaning and to question, to name and to obfuscate. The content of Black’s conversations is myriad: race, gender, art, time, colonialism, capitalism, eco-consciousness, community, social governance, power, responsibility, violence, politics, protest, identity, embodiment — how the body is subject to, and by, all of these forces. The intersections of these issues are the locus of “the situation” around which the voices surge and ebb, circumlocute.