"Should I be laughing at this?..." is what most people wonder when confronted with Yara El-Sherbini’s work.
PC (political correctness) as a cultural phenomenon which has taught us to repress our reactions to “The Other” in case we offend, is a major consideration in our society. Although in theory it’s been designed to generate a climate of tolerance and respect in a world full of diversity; in practice it often acts as a device for systematically disengaging ourselves from certain “issues”, leaving us with “taboo subjects” which block our freedom to respond naturally. We refrain from questioning and entering into a dialogue… we stop thinking.
With the characteristic defiance of youth, Yara’s artistic discourse homes in on so called “sensitive issues”, and invites the viewer to temporarily suspend disengagement. Laughter is a reaction we have when we “get it”, when we suddenly become aware of the incongruity and utter absurdity of a situation.
This is how Yara uses humour, not as a device to ridicule, attack, or criticize, but as a method of engagement, a device to provoke her audience to take another look at the idiosyncrasies of contemporary society … to have the audacity to engage with “difficult “ issues and to think again.
In cooperation with La Caja Blanca (Palma de Mallorca / London)
Curated by José Luis Pérez Pont