At The Gates
Maja Bajevic, Camille Ducellier, Monique Frydman, Navine G. Khan-Dossos, Jesse Jones, Teresa Margolles, Olivia Plender, Artists’ Campaign to Repeal the Eighth Amendment
from 15 June to 25 August 2019
opening on Friday 14 June 2019 at 6:30 pm
Inspired by the tidal wave of change that has been sweeping the world, At the Gates is an exhibition celebrating the distinctive and powerful voices of artists engaging with social histories and personal politics. Often brushing up against the law, or institutions of power, the works in this exhibition amplify the global struggle towards female self-empowerment, and in the case of Ireland’s historic fight for abortion rights against the Eighth Amendment in 2018, the right to bodily self-determination.
At the Gates presents eight international artists and collectives who rub upagainst the law or institutions of power, in artworks that tell stories of violence, campaigning, rehabilitation and exploitation in and around women’s histories. Drawing strength from Silvia Federici and her historical alignment of the early accumulation of capital and the systematic oppression of women, At the Gates is motivated by the complex struggle of women to find, protect, and even rehabilitate their voice. These artists and their individual projects attest to the volume of these voices, images, banners, objects and artworks as they amass and become part of a public discussion.
The title At the Gates, is partly inspired by Franz Kafka’s parable Before the Law. This is a story about a man who spends his life standing at the gates of the law awaiting permission to enter. The title also borrows from American suffragist Lavinia Dock who said in 1917: ‘The old stiff minds must give way. The old selfish minds must go. Obstructive reactionaries must move on. The young are at the gates!’ At the Gates celebrates artists who are not waiting for permission: “It is about understanding that you first have to disturb, you first have to disrupt, there first has to be an upheaval… you knew, in witch-like fashion, exactly what we needed to do and to hear and to see and to fear.” – Ailbhe Smyth speaking at the opening of Jesse Jones’ ‘Tremble Tremble’, the weekend after Ireland’s historic referendum to legalise abortion ‘Repeal the Eighth Amendment’ was won in 2018.
Tessa Giblin, Director of Talbot Rice Gallery, and Commissioner & Curator of ‘Tremble Tremble’, Ireland at Venice, 2017, and Sophie Kaplan, Director of La Criee.