Eva Koťátková: My Body Is Not an Island

Dec. 7, 2022 - Jun. 4, 2023
National Gallery, Dukelských Hrdinů 47, Holešovice, Prague, 170 00 Curator: Sandra Patron, Rado IštokText by: PAW

In her work, Eva Koťátková combines objects, collages, costumes, and texts into vast, playful, poetic, and often performative installations, to suggest how deeply our personal lives are swayed by our social environment with its codes and norms.

My Body Is Not an Island takes the shape of a gigantic body, part-fish, part-human; each part tells a myriad of stories whose entrancing litany echoes throughout the exhibition space. With its inscrutable, troubling identity, and the way it unfolds like an immersive landscape, it is accessible to any visitor willing to lend an ear to its many stories. Every Saturday afternoon during the course of the exhibition, the installation will be inhabited and activated by performers, who will share with the public the different stories it contains: that of a child bullied at school, of a shrimp being boiled alive, or of a bush torn away from its native surroundings to be replanted in the suburbs. As a whole, the spirit of the installation seems to rest upon the cry for a life with more empathy and less normative pressure uttered by one of its protagonists: “I dream of a body endowed with many skins.”

National Gallery Prague