341 WINTER 2022-23 FORMS/IDENTITIES
Is it identity that determines form or form that somehow constitutes the identity of an artistic practice? While analyzing some notable visual practices — each inescapably linked to an artist’s personality and the ways in which they experience society — we reflected on this question. In this winter issue, titled FORMS/IDENTITIES, we delve into these two concepts that inform one another like complementary colors. Octavia Bürgel, in her text on Tourmaline, one of the issue’s cover stories, considers the words of Diane Arbus, who once wondered “what it is to become whoever we may be.” Unlike Arbus’s subjects, who in a sense cease to exist beyond their limited picture plane, Tourmaline’s presence in her videos and photographs becomes part of a shared real-world narrative, a part of the legacy of Black history that she questions by “taking an approach that renders herself indivisible from ancestors in the fight for transgender liberation.”
Spanning performance, works on paper, and photography, Tosh Basco’s practice, as Matthew McLean points out, “finds forms for the inexpressible, in order to explore what happens outside languages and in between them.” Whether they employ movement, lip-synching, mark-making, or the photographic image, her embodied works are like portals to a fleeting moment in time.
Stories of transdisciplinary identities intermingle in this issue. One of them is the preternaturally gifted artist, musician, model, and actress Kaya Wilkins — known in the creative industry as Okay Kaya, the other cover story of this issue. Among other things, she discusses with Isabelia Herrera her visceral connection to water, a motif that finds expression in multiple forms, including her latest album, SAP (2022), released last November.
Returning to photography, Olamiju Fajemisinoffers us a fresh and timely analysis of Wolfgang Tillmans, arguing how “his recurrent point of departure is the single image — an image that is self-sufficient and attempts to challenge its condition of singularity as a standalone work.”
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