The artist Fiona Tan (b. 1966) is among the outstanding artists of her generation. The survey “Geography of Time” at the MMK 1 will focus on major works from her film œuvre – for example the double projection “Rise and Fall” produced by the artist in 2009 for the Dutch Pavilion at the Venice Biennale – as well as on the latest developments in her work, which increasingly takes the form of installation environments.
Fiona Tan employs film, photography, installation, audio and text to pose fundamental questions on the identity of man in the twenty-first century: how do we see ourselves, and how can we understand the mechanism that determines our perspective on others? Her moving and intensely human works explore history and time and our place within them. In filmically striking images and installations, Tan addresses how our own memories influence our perceptions of the present. In her imagery, the boundaries between personal and collective memory, interior and exterior, fiction and reality dissolve.
Memory and identity have been recurring themes in Fiona Tan’s œuvre since the beginning of her artistic career. Inspired by her own cultural background – she was born in Indonesia the child of Chinese-Australian parents, grew up in Australia and later moved to the Netherlands – the issue of the global cultural imprint plays a particularly decisive role in her work. Presented in a fascinating exhibition architecture designed by Fiona Tan herself, the show at the MMK will pursue these leitmotifs in works like “Diptych” (2006–11), consisting of filmic portraits of twins, highly elaborated video installations such as “Nellie” (2013), or the artist’s recent mixed-media works and object installations, for example “Ghost Dwellings” or 1 to 87.