Berlin

Nilbar Güreş, Elsewhere’s Palm Trees, 2012–18, HD video, color, silent, 9 minutes 2 seconds. From “Rust & Bones.”

Nilbar Güreş, Elsewhere’s Palm Trees, 2012–18, HD video, color, silent, 9 minutes 2 seconds. From “Rust & Bones.”

“Rust & Bones”

Galerie Tanja Wagner

While some things deteriorate with time’s passing, others resist its effects. Or so the title “Rust & Bones” seemed to remind us. But this tight gathering of works by Ulf Aminde, Nilbar Güreş, Laurel Nakadate, and Justin Liam O’Brien was more oblique than that. It was an exhibition about relationality and confrontation that asked viewers to privilege efforts at reconciliation and togetherness over the conflict and isolation that often seem their inevitable outcome.

In Nakadate’s short video Exorcism in January, 2009, the artist, a young woman, visits an older man in his messy, gray apartment. The two met by chance as neighbors; he’s asked her to perform an exorcism on him to help alleviate his depression. “Go away, spirits,” she commands, as his body, belly trembling, convulses on the bed. Another scene shows her, alone in her room, steeped in the same dusty light and the same sense of

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