“Who can afford to not sell their own skin?” - Sophie Soobramanien
Tue Feb 07 2023 at 06:00 pm to 07:00 pm
W139 | Amsterdam, NH
About this Event
As part of W139's upcoming exhibition, Dead Skin Cash, six artists are invited to react to the prompt “Who can afford to not sell their own skin?” by curating a playlist of visual and audio materials for this weekly screening program.
Sophie Soobramanien (b. 1995) is a British Mauritian artist living and working in Amsterdam. She is not sure what she is doing anymore. But she recently bought a 2023 year planner and this felt good.
In the exhibition Dead Skin Cash Ghita Skali and Salim Bayri take dead skin as a starting point to zoom in on the ambiguities within our relationship to flaking epidermis — the tensions between its acceptance and rejection (some keep it, some scrub it away), its proximity and our neglect, our indifference and its unstoppable production, our obsession and care but disgust once it leaves the body.
Offering €20 per gram, dead skin collection networks emerged through gossip, online advertisements, business cards, and stickers distributed around the city repeating the slogan “get money for your dead skin”. A naive attempt to create a new kind of currency while simultaneously diverting and redistributing public money to people who took the bait out of curiosity, necessity, or entertainment. Within this context, an intimate and immediate material such as skin becomes a possible commodity. How dirty can money be?
What happens when a value is set on something we expel from our bodies? When there is the possibility of getting a reward for something that is usually discarded, dilemmas arise between economic interests, integrity, ethics, labour, and exploitation—echoing the metaphor of ‘selling your own skin’. Despite this enticing offer, some people had no interest in this exchange, provoking the question “who can afford not to sell their own skin?”.
Where is it happening?W139, 139 Warmoesstraat, Amsterdam, Netherlands
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