DREAM GOSSIP _ BEATRICE GIBSON
Dream Gossip, the first solo exhibition in Italy by the French-British artist Beatrice Gibson.
The show, hosted by ORDET from Jan. 13 to Feb. 15, takes its title from a dream column run by poet Alice Notley in the 90’s New York poetry zine Scarlet.
Scarlet was self-published by Notley and her late husband, fellow poet Douglas Oliver from their apartment in St Marks Place.
Dream Gossip printed the poetry community’s scandalous dreams. Their appearance next to articles, poems and editorials chronicling the AIDS crisis and the Gulf War attests to Notley’s profound belief in the political potency of feeling and dreaming.
The three films in the exhibition – Deux Soeurs Qui Ne Sont Pas Soeurs (2019), Dreaming Alcestis (2022), and Dear Barbara, Bette and Nina (2020) – similarly explore feelings, dreaming and intimacy as collective tools for a turbulent, political present.
Gibson’s films are known for being deeply citational, formed by off- and on-screen relationships.
Deux Soeurs, for example, features not only intellectual and artistic godmothers such as Notley and Stein but also contemporaries and friends – figures who have inspired and enabled Gibson’s working life, such as filmmakers AnaVaz and Basma Alsharif, artist Adam Christensen, as well as Diocouda Diaoune, Gibson’s son’s first carer.
Formally, Deux Soeurs eschews conventional narrative in favour of dream-like, associative montage.
The characters in the film don’t talk as much as they emote and pulsate; track the pulse of being. Stein’s elliptical script becomes the trigger for deeper personal explorations of inheritance, responsibility, ethics, and futurity. This interest in the politics of feeling or emotion, in moving and being moved, also infuses the second work in the show. Dreaming Alcestis, co-directed with her partner Nick Gordon and co-written with Maria Nadotti, pushes the dream-like quality of Gibson’s work even further, exploring pure feeling. Conceived as an immersive installation, Dreaming Alcestis is a deeply experimental work, the least cerebral or most somatic of Gibson’s works to date.
Two characters, collectively dreaming of a long-dead queen (or perhaps, being dreamt by her) are captured in long-held shots, as if in real-time, refracted holographically and infused and interrupted by the sounds of the city and the sea. A third and final film completes the exhibition. Shot, again, in Palermo in early 2020, Dear Barbara, Bette and Nina is a letter to three older female filmmakers who have profoundly influenced Gibson’s work. Tracing a line through and between a series of intellectual godmothers, contemporaries and friends the film cites these figures as inspiration, positing a collective politics of refusal.
Born in London in 1978 and based in Londonand Palermo, Beatrice Gibson is an artist and filmmaker. Her works have been shown in film festivals around the world, including Cannes, Toronto, London, New York and Oberhausen.
She has twice won the prize for best short filmat the Rotterdam International Film Festival in 2009 and 2013. She has been twice nominated for the Jarman Award for Artist’s Film in 2013 and 2019 respectively. In 2015 she won the Baloise Art Prize, Art Basel and most recently was the recipient of the Marian McMahon Akimbo Award for Autobiography in 2019. She has recently had solo exhibitions at Camden Art Centre, London (2019), Bergen Kunsthall (2019), Mercer Union, Toronto (2019) and KW Institute for Contemporary Art, Berlin (2018). She is currently working on her first feature film with BBC films.
Via Adige 17, 20135 Milano+39 02 47757753mer-sab, h 14-19, e su appuntamento