The Volume! Foundation is proud of presenting Regina Josè Galindo, one of the most interesting and evocative artists of the international artistic overview. She has got the Gold Lion (under 35) in the last edition of the Venice Biennial. This is her first exhibition in Rome and she has conceived for Volume! the performance Cepo that is inspired by the next Regina Coeli prison. The performance will take place near the wall running along the prison’s yard. The artist will be locked in a pillory for many hours, and bread and water will be given her. The action is a claim of resistance against the dynamics of the instrumental separation of Good and Evil, innocence and guilt, freedom and subjugation with which the society justifies its own decision-making powers’ exertion upon the single, in political and cultural areas.
“Human being constantly lives the tension among power’s strategies. Society always has a strong and weak component, a victim and an executioner, the one who is free and the one who is condemned. Inside this tension the human being feels himself to be paralysed, constricted, shut out from the system itself, from his aim to maintain the control. Imaginary prisons and form of daily torture are created to free the single freedom”
Regina Galindo builds the system ruling her artistic language and the astonishing immediacy of her iconographic apparatus through actions and performances based on the metaphorical shift. Using her body as a multifaceted territory of denounce, the artist makes herself the living manifesto of the gravity and of the urgency of solving the current problems piercing social context that are culturally and politically indigent, like Guatemala, from where she comes. Her struggle is not abstract at all;
it doesn’t face with universal themes and doesn’t argue about them. It always has a factor of concreteness leading it to investigate, unmask and consequently to denounce real deeds and misdeeds. Visually, her battle emerges at the same time as silent and shouting and it is based on the concept of the resistance of the single and of the community against censorship and denial of the life. Often this battle concerns more with woman, (the restrictions and the abuses she suffers), but it should not be considered as a post-feminist protest. The centre of her range of interests is the human being, the humanity considered as a social body dismembered by the conflicts internal to the power’s dynamics. Taking cue from the reality, Galindo emulates the cruelty of some repression’s (political, psychological, sexist) mechanisms and she visually represents theirs absurdity by giving the public the reiteration of a real account that is always spread without a filter. Her political protest presents itself as a ruthless sacrificial expiation: as the restoration of her hymen (presented in the video Himenoplastia, 2004) or the incision of her own flesh (in the performance Perra, 2005, in which the artist writes on her legs with a great knife the name that usually defines prostitutes).
Galindo always immolates herself without languid sentimentality. She feels clearly of ever suffering and ever living in a state of (soft, domestic, individual and public, collective and popular) war and so she inevitably doesn’t take on any type of pitiable manner. But she develops an insolence that, translated in the art language, takes on a disruptive and universal aesthetical value.