2018 | an immersion in the emotional body
by collaborative installation artists Talita Cabral & Katelyn Halpern
Heartstrung immerses visitors in the emotional body as imagined by collaborative installation artists Talita Cabral and Katelyn Halpern. Sparked by early conversations about the female body, blood, and interiority, Heartstrung holds viewers in a sacred, brutal space pulsing with thought, feeling, and vitality. Mammalian body processes of absorption, retention, and release suffuse the environment, enriching and complicating the question how does the body hold the emotional heart?
Participatory elements serve as a reminder that, although our bodies are singular and self contained, we exist in relationship to others. Before stepping in, guests are asked to remove their shoes as a means of both sensitizing themselves and of softening their tread. Within the exhibition, guests are invited to help anchor the heartform by tying strips of fabric from the chamber walls to the heart sculpture. By accepting the premise of literal heartstrings, the artists signal their rejection of the pervasive, violent story separating the body, mind, and heart, and instead move to rejoin them in full public view.
The exhibition includes a 33 foot long multi-room immersive installation and a collection of small works by the artists. Composer Elliot Cole’s audio collage accompanies the installation. It was presented at SMUSH Gallery October 5 - November 18, 2018.