ENTANGLED FUTURITIES: METASPORES FOR QUEER TRANS/GENIC SYMBIONTS
TIGRE (BAILANDO) MASHAAL-LIVELY & PASCAL EMMER
May 28–July 31, 2021
Friday, May 28, 5–7pm
ARTIST OPEN HOUSE
Saturday, May 29, 11am–3pm
LONGFORM AMBIENT MUSIC PERFORMANCE
Saturday, June 5, 12–3pm
(May 2021) form & concept is delighted to announce Entangled Futurities: metaspores for queer trans/genic symbionts, a new two-person exhibition featuring never-before-exhibited ink drawings, small sculptures and a sound installation by emerging New Mexico-based artists Tigre (Bailando) Mashaal-Lively and Pascal Emmer. Entangled Futurities is a collaborative intertwining of visionary fiction and material works by Emmer and Mashaal-Lively, which together form a relationship to the question: How do we spore the futures in which we want to live? An Opening Reception is scheduled on Friday, May 28, 5–7pm, and an Artist Open House will be held the following day, Saturday, May 29, 11am–3pm.
“This project speaks in the language of mycelium,” write the artists, referring to a multicellular fungi, invisible to the human eye until it forms what we commonly recognize as mushrooms. “This infinite underground network sustains us in a time of toxic political landscapes and climate catastrophe. From the wild matsutake mushrooms that heal the irradiated soil around Hiroshima and Nagasaki, to the radiotrophic fungi that harness energy for their own flourishing from Chernobyl’s nuclear debris, mycelial conspirators are constantly finding ways to repurpose the waste from toxic, decomposing systems.” Inspired by this super-organism and its poetic application to humanity’s destructive sides (ie capitalism, racial supremacy, human hierarchies, militarism), Mashaal-Lively and Emmer illustrate and explore the natural disruption that has and is unfolding all around us (and beneath our feet).
Tigre (Bailando) Mashaal-Lively is a Black mixed-race, genderqueer artist raised in Philadelphia and based in New Mexico. They hold a BA in Visual and Performing Arts from Bennington College (2008). Working across a wide array of mediums and disciplines, Tigre creates art ranging from large-scale installations, sculptures and murals to intimate illustrations, paintings, music and movement-based performance. Their work has been exhibited around the globe, from North America to Southeast Asia, and from Europe to Australia. Mashaal-Lively is a founding member of Earthseed Black Arts Alliance and Braided Branches Collective, an inaugural cohort member of the Design Science Studio, and a long-time collaborator with esteemed performance companies Bad Unkl Sista and Embodiment Project. Tigre’s work has previously appeared at form & concept in Family Room and Hand Tools of Resilience.
Pascal Emmer is a ceramic artist, social movement researcher and speculative fiction writer who uses collaborative design and participatory research to create stories and possibilities for a future otherwise. For over 15 years they have been involved in abolitionist organizing, most recently with the COVID-19 Policing Project. Their current project sub/terre/fuge is a speculative experiment about transgenic hybridity, mycoremediation, exoplanetary colonization, post-capitalist futures and queer love. Previous exhibitions at form & concept include Spectrum (2021) and Family Room (2020). They live in O’ga P’ogeh (Santa Fe, NM).
Entangled Futurities is a touchpoint for a speculative story I call sub/terre/fuge about trans/genic hybridity, exoplanetary colonization, post-capitalist futures and queer love. Set approximately a century into the future, sub/terre/fuge takes place in the southwestern region of the former U.S. in a time after the “Great Immolation”—a global-scale nuclear war following massive ecological collapse, climate migration, crop failure and water scarcity. Having developed quantum interstellar technology, the billionaire class has departed Earth to plunder terrestrial bodies in nearby solar systems. The remaining human population is divided between “terrans,” those without genetic modification, and “sub-terrans,” those who are trans/genic hybrids of mushroom species capable of absorbing radioactive toxins. Originally bioengineered as military soldiers who can withstand highly irradiated environments, sub-terrans discover how to use their mycelium to build an underground network of resistance and reclaim their power of mycoremediation (healing ruined ecologies with their bodies). Together with their human and more-than-human kin, they must figure out, in the words of Donna Haraway, how to “make compost” of this world in the post-Capitalocene era. - Pascal Emmer
The body of works represented in this show is a continuation of a project I have been exploring for the past five years—an unfolding devised mythology exploring ideas of identity, mental/somatic well-being, interrelationality and alternative realities. The work speculates the existence of several transdimensional and transtemporal lifeforms (Solacii Unitaria, Discordyceps Vehementi, etc), empathically intertwined with the experience and development of homo sapiens. Inspired by the concept of the holobiont and the systems of macro/microbial relationships existing within and around all bodies, this work asks us to question our traditional concepts of selfhood and what we consider “ourselves.” The speculative beings in this body of work are complex, sentient superorgasms—mycelium-like networks of decentralized consciousness entangled with human destiny through intimate relationship with our own patterns of thought and feeling. Like real world mycelial-sapiens dynamics, some of these relationships are beneficial to the human experience while others are parasitic and exacerbate our destructive tendencies towards fear, anger and despair. Further, incorporating ideas of horizontal gene transfer and non-linear time, the work complicates the ancestral/forecestral polarity within ideas of evolution and culture, asking: How do ideas of ancestry and futurity shift within circular, spiraling, or undulating (wave) temporal frameworks? - Tigre (Bailando) Mashaal-Lively
For press or image inquiries, please contact Marissa Fassano at firstname.lastname@example.org or call (505) 780-8312 x1002.