After having participated in Art Basel Miami, Art Basel Unlimited, Art Basel OVR: 2020, Art Basel OVR : 20c, and Art Basel OVR : Pioneers, Galerie Poggi is proud to announce its first participation in Art Basel, Basel in September 2021.
As part of the “Feature” sector, the gallery and Kapwani Kiwanga have worked on an entirely new project specially conceived for the fair.
Titled Potomitans, the project furthers Kiwanga’s recent research around botanics and how the study of their history can help us interrogate what constitutes a historical archive. Engaging with the ability of plants to carry the trace of unrecorded histories and localized knowledge, the artist’s research subtly questions our relation to History.
This time Kiwanga looked into plants that were historically used as poisons. Two plants in particular were chosen for the project : the mimosa pudica and the pokeweed plant.
Working hand in hand, the artist and the gallery have worked with goldsmith Margaux Cormier to reconstitue the flowers and leafs of each plant in solid silver. The jewels were then hung to silver chains, recalling the so-called witch ladders, i.e. the knotted strings that were used in witchcraft as spell casters. Although they had many uses, it was believed they were used to induce death in particular.
The 40 chains were then suspended from floor to ceiling, building upon the history of minimalism, and contributing to Kiwanga’s questioning of our accepted artistic standards, a reflection that she has been infusing in her practice for several years.
Winner of the 2020 Prix Marcel Duchamp, 2018 Sobey Award, and 2018 Frieze Award, Kapwani Kiwanga is one of the leading artists of her generation.