Amalia Pica: ears to speak of
Tuesday–Wednesday 10 – 5 PM
Thursday 10 – 8 PM
Friday–Sunday 10 – 6 PM
*Open holiday Mondays 10 – 5 PM
For her exhibition ears to speak of at The Power Plant, Amalia Pica will develop Ears (2017), a new work, which continues her engagement with the failures and impossibilities of communication and obsolete technologies. The artist will create monumental cardboard reconstructions of acoustic radars, also referred to as ‘listening ears’, found in Denge, Kent in the UK. These devices were built along the coast of England between the 1920s-1930s. Designed to pre-empt aerial attacks by detecting the sound of incoming aircraft, these radars were quickly outmoded, due to the rapid evolution of aircraft and radar technologies. Now the structures stand as ruins, monuments to failure.
Pica re-activates them in the context of The Power Plant, which is located at Toronto’s Harbourfront, and is enveloped by the sound of aircraft taking off and landing at the neighbouring airport. She previously created Acoustic Radar in Cardboard (2012), another precursor to radar technology from World War I, to, “make an image about listening, rather than making a functioning device.” By rendering these outmoded technologies in cardboard—a material which absorbs sound—Pica highlights the uselessness and ephemeral quality of the structures. But the work also evokes the question: if thought and space are created through articulation, what are the potentialities in failure, and how can the subjectivity of interpretation be productive?