Cecilia Bengolea (b. 1979, Buenos Aires) is a multidisciplinary artist whose practice merges video, choreography, and sculpture. In her investigation, Bengolea explores forms of popular dance which combine contemporary and archaic elements, where the timeless concept of figuration reappears. Following the thread of water and movement flow, this exhibition presents three works where the artist’s reflection on dance, the sensorial interplay between the body’s interiority and exteriority, as well as the rhythmical relations of social community and nature, manifest through choreographic language. The recent production Lightning Dance (2018) is, as many of her projects, based on a profound collaboration between the artist and the featured performers. The work, in this case, belongs to the series developed by Bengolea around dancehall culture on the island of Jamaica. This vibrant piece investigates the influence of atmospheric electricity on behavior and the imagination. The rhythm constructed by the video shows a constant intertwining of musical and environmental energies, thunder and percussion, synchronized as part of a unique sound system. For these groups of performers, not only is dance a form of expression but it is also invested with curative powers.
This spectacular piece is joined by two digital animations, Bestiaire (2019) and Favorite positions (2018). Using hologram-like imagery, the artist visualizes the fantastical transformations of a body in a state of perpetual change. Bestiaire takes inspiration from descriptions found in Jorge Luis Borges's Book of Imaginary Beings, after which the artist scanned her body while morphing into a bestiary of fantastic creatures. Meanwhile, the video sculpture Favorite Positions summons the octopus spirit to suggest a body without boundaries – a fully liquid being, born out of a state of constant rehearsal. The soul and rhythms that infuse this body move in multiples directions at once.
Curator: Manuel Cirauqui
Lightning Dance, 2018
Video screening, black & white, sound
Courtesy of the artist and àngels barcelona
© Cecilia Bengolea
For more information, please visit https://www.guggenheim-bilbao.eus/