C&AL: What role does the body play in space, and how does technology change the perceptions of it?
e: We need to first ask what body and whose body – as the body is variable in space. Space in itself is a vague definition as it needs someone’s body to activate it and give it context. How is space built from the way people relate to each other? There is not one single answer to this question, as factors such as race, disability, gender, and so on come into play when shaping human relations. Digital technology does not necessarily create an alternative to physical space, and many of the same relations present in physical space end up reproduced in digital ones, good or bad. It is, however, an added layer through which to process those relationships and interactions.
C&AL: For C&AL you have created a work that explores the themes of grief and death through the lens of digital media. Could you take us into it?
e: The work was inspired by my need to understand the process of grieving as it related to my experiences. I grew up with death very present around me, having lost both my parents at a young age and then eventually my grandparents, who raised me. Earlier this year I realized I had never given myself proper space, or even permission, to openly grieve, while at the same time wondering if I had not simply been in a long-term state of grieving without knowing. I started thinking of ways this process could take shape, thinking about my lost family members and family history, how I could regain this lost part of myself (or finally accept its loss). I might not be able to do this easily due to my family having no written records, which is unfortunately very common for Black families in Brazil. But what if I could construct a world through which this quest could be pursued? A world where history is not linear or definite? These questions led me to develop this work using visual novels, a genre of video games, as an inspiration.
Watch here the artwork holding death close (mantendo a morte perto), created by enorê for C&AL Commissions.
enorê is a multimedia Brazilian artist currently based in London.
Interview by Angela Muritu and Theresa Sigmund.