In rhetoric, the word tautology describes a statement in which a concept or idea is repeated, either word for word or with rephrasing, in order to give emphasis, or to reinforce a point in a self-referential manner. Even if no content is added to the statement’s literal meaning, this repetition adds a layer of symbolic value and is capable of increasing the tension between reality and its reproduction.
This exhibition aims to find echoes of tautologies within representational artistic practices. Is there not something tautological in any attempt to represent reality?
In ‘On Exactitude in Science’ Borges’ map demonstrates how 1:1 representations of territories are short-lived or at least inherently displaced from the reality they are created to represent. This displacement—the unavoidable distance from the perfect doubling, gives rise to unexpected “glitches” or flaws in meaning, which can materialise between the concrete and the abstract and ultimately influence the reality they are depicting. In this context, redundancies become desirable and produce effects: they add layers of symbolic value and increase the tension between reality and its reproduction.
The artists taking part in this exhibition adopt tautological gestures and self-referencing strategies in their own works that address the media they use, their artistic practices or reality at large. Through these attempts to overlay a representation of reality on the top of reality itself, they create spaces for rediscussing social and cultural conventions, rematerializing the virtuality of the real and deconstructing linguistic structures that might otherwise be taken for granted.
Curated by Davide Bevilacqua and Marie-Andrée Pellerin, bb15 Team
Cover Image: Annabel Lange, Untitled, 2020 (2009)
Pablo Chiereghin: pablochiereghin.com
Nieves de la Fuente: nievesdelafuente.es
Boris Kurdi: instagram.com/boriskurdi
Annabel Lange: annabellange.de
Martina Menegon: martinamenegon.com