Chest Variations

January 17 –  March 23, 2019

Andrea Éva Győri


“Andrea Éva Győri’s practice is marked by an in-depth examination into the human body and mind. “What do we know about our bodies? What do we share?” In 2012, the artist started a shower tour, asking people for a chance to shower in their place as she didn’t have a shower in her own flat. As a reward, the shower host could document her showering. For Manifesta 11, she teamed up with a sex therapist, with whom she explored the female orgasm and the connection between self satisfaction and the corresponding fantasies behind it. “I am especially interested in the female orgasm and female masturbation,” the artist writes in her recent publication/artist book Vibration Highway, “because I think this is a means to get deeper into the question of how the mind affects the body and our behaviour.” After setting up an intimate atmosphere of honesty, trust and fun, Andrea Éva Győri made drawings of masturbating women, who came to her space to share their sexual fantasies and experiences with masturbation.

Touching upon themes that are often left untouched, Győri pleads for a breaking down of taboos and a pushing of the invisible boundaries between public and private. Topics like well-being, health, mental and physical diseases run through her practice. Phobia of viruses and cancer formed the departing point for a series of works in 2013: Boob Job Nike: A Monument to the Heroes of Warsaw and Fear of the Breast 1-18 Analysis. In the first, Győri gave a statue of Nike in Warsaw a breast enlargement as a symbol of success and advantage, but also implanted a breast illness – implying that people in our societies suffer from both. The second is a series of drawings of breasts contaminated by yellowish and sticky body bulbs. These works were made long before she was diagnosed with breast cancer in 2017.” (from a text co-authored by Andrea Éva Győri and Huib Haye van der Werf)

Chest Variations features work created in 2017/18. With the exception of the paintings and video Chest Massage, works were developed as a commission by the Vleeshal Center for Contemporary Art (Middelburg, NL) for an exhibition curated by Roos Gortzak. These offer openhearted insight into how Győri handles cancer and considers other possibilities for chests, breasts and ways in which femininity flourishes. “Chest Variations” is the artist’s first solo exhibition in Belgium and runs parallel to a larger exhibition hosted by the Museum of Contemporary Art (IKOB) in Eupen, curated by Frank-Thorsten Moll.

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