Advertisement for the Waldorf – Astoria
Arte Institute suggests “Advertisement for the Waldorf – Astoria” by Beatriz Albuquerque.
Curator: Kim Bobier
Performance & Reception: Saturday, 10 Dec., 5PM – 7PM
Performance by Beatriz Albuquerque with sound by Jorge Queijo.
Exhibition: 10 Dec. 2016 – 30 Jan. 2017
MCO Gallery, R. do Duque Palmela 143, Porto – Portugal.
“Fine living . . . a la carte?” asks Langston Hughes. Artist Beatriz Albuquerque explores this offer from his satirical poem “Advertisement for the Waldorf-Astoria.” In her solo exhibition with the same title, she materializes the bounty of absurd reveries that Hughes’s words solicit. She surrounds gallery visitors with a spread of glistening cuisine, a tea party performance, and a floor-to-ceiling installation of dollar bills. Beatriz Albuquerque also evokes Hughes perspective as a transgressive writer and figure of the Harlem Renaissance. One photographic series shows the Harlem cityscape through peepholes and another series features surreal rooms that she personally trespassed. Like these pictures, all of the work in this exhibition sensually entices while raising questions about social entitlement. The architectural and interior-spaces of her photographs implicate viewers in acts of voyeurism and intrusion, while the only edible food for gallery-goers to consume turns out to require symbolic cannibalism. Like Hughes, she tempts the audience only to thwart and redirect their desires. Rather than reinforcing our institutionalized wants and expectations, her art prompts us to investigate alternative, aesthetic forms of generosity. — Kim Bobier
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