Performance Documents, 1980-1987/2013
Mona Hatoum

Galerie Chantal Crousel is delighted to host Mona Hatoum’s newest solo exhibition in its second space at 5 rue de Saintonge, with a presentation of the major installation Performance Documents, 1980-1987/2013. This important work comprising photographs, sketches, drawings, notes, descriptions and videos, brings together rare archive material from a strategic and early point in Hatoum’s career when she created performance in both a gallery setting and outside, on the streets.

Exhibition Performance Documents, 1980-1987/2013
Artists Mona Hatoum
Date 04.06.22 - 23.07.22
Venue Galerie Chantal Crousel, Paris
All images Courtesy of the artist and Galerie Chantal Crousel, Paris. Photo: Aurélien Mole.

Hatoum’s performances are particularly striking since they are both dramatically visual and emotionally and politically engaged, characteristics which underpin all of her work thereafter. In these works we see themes that the artist returns to many times in her sculptures, installations and works on paper, with particular focus on the body, issues of gender and notions of conflict and displacement. Props such as furniture and domestic tools as well as confined, architectural structures create a textural background for actions that focused intensely on the body and, in particular, on the experience of being a displaced person.

The sketches are also remarkable in that they evidence the emerging sculptor that Mona Hatoum would become as well giving vivid insight into the working mind of an artist, showing both the initial ideas as well as the revisions and changes that are necessary in order to create a successful artwork. Mona Hatoum’s decision to make performances at this time was partly due to necessity since she had limited funds, but also due to her active involvement in the fringe scenes of the London art world at the time, having recently graduated from art school. Since these works were often performed only once, this documentation provides the contemporary viewer with a unique, highly interactive engagement not just in an important period in Mona Hatoum’s career but in 1980s art in general.

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