Photography: Aad Hoogendoorn
How do we imagine madness? How much of our imagination and perception has been imposed by external agents, including the state, religion, or the family? How
can we reimagine, decolonise, or respond to those impositions? These questions lie at the heart of the work Contesting Madness, a newly commissioned installation
by Natalia Sorzano that draws on research developed over the past five years. Starting from lingering questions around classifications of mental illness and different genealogies of healing, her work addresses the coloniality of madness, a construction that Europeans carried across the ocean, projecting their fantasies, fears, and prejudices onto colonised peoples and territories. Crucial to how this project unfolds is the blending of different vocabularies, artistic mediums, and affective registers that are both challenging and playful. Inviting the viewer to touch, hear, see, and move with that which is imperceptible and yet so present, Sorzano leads us into her world of transgression and healing through animistic philosophies pervaded with magic. In four filmic chapters, the work underscores histories of subjugation at the intersection of race, gender, sexuality, and class.
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