Tereza Jindrová | Spiritualities: Three Contemporary Portrayals of Transcendence and Beliefs

Year: 2020
Location: Prague, Czech Republic (Meet Factory)
Curator: Tereza Jindrová
Authors: Melanie Bonajo (NL), Jakub Jansa (CZ), Priscilla Telmon & Vincent Moon (FR)
Client:  Meet Factory
Photo: Zdeněk Porcal

“Within the framework of the long-term project Other Knowledge, we ask the overarching question: “how do we explore the world with other ‘tools’ besides reason?” Faith is one of the basic means of knowledge, though it avoids strict rationality. The exhibition Spiritualities: Three Contemporary Portrayals of Transcendence and Beliefs focuses on the theme of faith, particularly to the characteristics of individual and collective spiritual experiences. It simultaneously forms an imaginary prologue to the whole exhibition cycle Other Knowledge, because it refers to topics in the second part that will be developed in subsequent exhibitions (e.g. ritual, magic, drugs or virtual reality).

Without a doubt, the topic of spirituality offers a myriad of potential interpretations, but the exhibition will be radically reduced and schematized: only three works will be presented, all of which conceive of faith and spiritual experience from divergent, yet interconnected perspectives.

The extensive Híbridos project, by French artist duo Priscilla Telmon and Vincent Moon, is based on their long-term research of Brazil’s various strains of religious belief. In this context, animistic traditions are mixed with Christianity, resulting in completely unique forms of ritual and liturgy. On one hand, the Híbridos project has an ethnographic character, but more importantly, it is a fascinating excursion into an incredibly colorful mosaic of Brazilian spirituality which connects Western and indigenous traditions.

Dutch artist Melanie Bonajo’s Night Soil: Fake Paradise is part of the trilogy, previously presented at, among other places, the 2018 Manifesta in Palermo. In part, Fake Paradise is a documentary which takes in hand today’s globalized “new-age” spirituality and the modern search for an authentic experience and rediscovery of the meaning of life. Fake Paradise concedes a large role in this process to psychoactive drugs, sexuality and a return to nature. At the same time, Melanie Bonajo emphasizes the value in feminism and ecology.

The third exhibited work will be a new commission by Jakub Jansa, an emerging Czech artist who has previously worked with themes involving cults, (spiritual) leaders and closed social groups. His new project, set in a fictional environment of digital ritual, focuses on spiritual experiences from the perspective of the current situation of instability, which from many aspects requires us to return to earth.

The three atmospherically conceived video installations, each with different emotional impacts, will be placed within a generous architectural arrangement, which will allow MeetFactory Gallery visitors a slightly different experience. (Tereza Jindrová)”