David Kordansky Gallery is pleased to present One-on-One: Tala Madani, The Door. The online exhibition debuts Madani's newest video animation, which tells a charged, satirical tale brimming with formal, visual experiments in less than three minutes. The presentation will remain on view through July 8, 2020.
To access One-on-One: Tala Madani, The Door, please click here.
In The Door (2019), viewers familiar with Madani's paintings and previous videos will recognize several continuing themes: power, sex, violence, and the uncomfortable reality of the human body are constantly observed with a ribald sense of humor, as twisted narratives are acted out with slapstick physical choreography. These hallmarks of Madani’s work, particularly her animations, are informed by her affinity for a varied group of underground cartoons, graphic novels, and cult movies.
The action of the video focuses on a figure—perhaps a baby, or a grown man, or some combination of the two—who watches a primal scene from the eponymous doorway. A man and a woman—presumably the figure’s parents––engage in an exchange whose comedy never fully mitigates the trouble that ensues between them. On the one hand, the viewer observes the action from the point of view of the baby, who might imagine that the act of sex, even under normal circumstances, is a strange and upsetting spectacle. On the other, however, Madani invites us to consider the pervasive nature of destructive relationships. The father's character is bent on inflicting as much pain as possible; the mother fights back to the point, literally, of overkill; and the baby seems to want to bid farewell to it all, even though he stares down the fact of his own origins. The soundtrack, filled with local sounds that underplay the chaos of the struggle, emphasizes that The Door can be read both literally and metaphorically.