PERSISTENT IMAGINATION (2015) ACRYLIC ON PAPER, 55 X 45 CM
Twice Removed, as a term, relates the conditions of either out of place or passing through several spaces or processes. It implies a certain “unnaturalness”, as if something’s filtered out after being subjected to being moved in ways that would count as rigorous. This incompatibility then is a little close to stark, akin to entering a foreign landscape: much like a person reared in the ways of the city navigating with their set of values in a countryside landscape. This time begs for an analogy that counters “fish out of the water” as this dis-placement identifies our faculties of understanding so foreignly rooted away from other contexts. Thus, the metropolitan measures their capacity to engage with the sharply different provincial life and finding it ingrained in limitation.
Twice Removed, as an exhibition, describes landscape not as a place. Rather it is a “sense” that has gone astray, leading to this limitations of being in-volved. The conditions are such that we are led to be habituated in systems of living without being aware of getting accustomed to them. Ideas of what natural is – a cacophony of objects, types of experiences and other signs that have become too easy to identify – are packaged to discount any imprint of process. In such conditions of production that Kat Medina inquires the misrepresentation of the contexts of these things and systems. They are imbedded as acceptable, and bring about a bigger inquiry into labor as the human sense that supposed to be ingrained into these products.
As a maker of things, Kat Medina solves the issue through craft as a trajectory from handwork to mechanical production to craft work. Attempts at demystifying the processes stay true first and foremost of her practice as a painter in the formalistic devices of the images and then as a sculptor predisposed to tactility. In the clamor of finding a sense of self in mass-produced things – material and intangible – authenticity surpasses a nostalgia for the hand. Rather, craft imprints more than the hand or the capacity to put to fore the process. Craft involves the consumer-user in the same way that the maker encounters the resources gathered to produce – this object is then shared in a structure of memory and other forms of metacognition. These things recaptures a space of relating, realigning hierarchies of outcome over process.
Hence Twice Removed allows an encounter of materials that require performing, i.e. not only technique but also through individual conditioning: ambivalence of clay and repetition of gestures in weaving. Familiar products are outlined in their mass-produced forms but are deconstructed in the cast of their own basic material constituents. The backdrop of manufacturing hovers about like a fundamental anchor, setting the scene of industrial processes amidst the pursuit of gaining back a sense of autonomy in this space carved by things.