Nov 15 2009

Layers of Authenticity

Published by Amrita Narine under ICP Exhibit

"La Contrebandière" ( The Smuggler), Tanger, 2006

Perhaps the most catching piece of artwork in ICP for me was Yto Barrada’s The Belt, Step 1 to 9. This piece shows a woman with the same expression in nine different pictures. At the beginning, she seems like a rather big woman, however, after viewing the rest of the pictures it is clear that she is just hiding layers of fabric. What really caught me about this piece was the reason behind the smuggling of fabrics. According to the writing next to the piece, “Ceuta’s economy depends in large part on the sale of such smuggled goods.”

The artist is showing one woman’s courage, her bravery. It represents the idea that sometimes people need to do, what they need to do. This woman is doing what needs to be done, in order to help her people. However, to me it also represents how easy it is to hide behind your image. The image that you show the world, doesn’t have to be the image that represents you, and often times people don’t catch on. People can see you differently just based on the way you’re dressed and it shows the power hidden behind creating an image for yourself.

One response so far

One Response to “Layers of Authenticity”

  1.   Jensen Rongon 07 Dec 2009 at 3:47 pm

    I find it interesting that even though it was supposed to be a serious topic, the portrayal of it made it look the opposite.

    What I mean is that the way the photographs are taken, especially with the lighting and the colors of the clothing, it seems more like a fashion show than a woman trying to smuggle contraband into a country.

    Funny isn’t it?