Tere Recarens

Galeria Toni Tàpies

In this show, “Karma Allumé,” Tere Recarens confirmed that she is an artist-traveler. Recarens’s first name, short for Teresa, has largely served to determine her itineraries and her artistic endeavors: In 2002, for instance, after finding out that tere means “hello” in Estonia, she traveled there and, as a result, produced a work titled ETC. Her most recent voyages have been to Mali, where she investigated the meaning of the word tere in the country’s most commonly used local language, Bambara.

In Mali, tere, ethnologist Salia Malé explains, denotes “an integral part of the components of every personality, every human’s (men and women) state of being, every animal and every plant and object.” Tere defines one’s nature, which can be either good or bad and is manifested through physiognomy or behavior. For example, a woman with large eyes is believed to possess a good tere, while one with

to keep reading

Artforum print subscribers have full access to this article. If you are a subscriber, sign in below.

Not registered for Register here.

SUBSCRIBE NOW for only $50 a year—65% off the newsstand price—and receive the print magazine plus full online access to this issue and our archive.*

Order the PRINT EDITION of the February 2009 issue for $17 or the ONLINE EDITION for $5.99.

* This rate applies to U.S. domestic subscriptions.