AB-ANBAR Gallery is delighted to announce Thingamajig, an exhibition featuring the work of 8 leading contemporary artists of Iranian heritage, presented by AB-ANBAR Gallery at the Pavilion Gallery, Cromwell Place, London. The starting point for this exhibition is the concept ofthe politics of things; the relationship between things and humans and how we collectively interrogate and categorize objects in a process the French philosopher Bruno Latour describes as Dingpolitics.
Framed through thematic explorations of Aristotle’s substantialism – the doctrine that a ‘thing’ is always defined by its content and is always the same, no matter its environment, this exhibition brings to light the latent state of dispute in all things, where objects resist being what they are and move from being a ‘thing’ to a Thingamajig. In short, the exhibition tries to foreground a shift from substantialism to relationalism, which defines a thing not only by its content but also by its context.
All the presented works subvert or defy factual representations, becoming things which are hard to classify, or whose name is lost or forgotten. These works might resemble things which are known and recognisable – and yet their irregularities distort, jar, subvert and throw us off balance by not quite being what we expected, making us also question other certainties and our physical presence in relation to them.
The collective experience of Thingamajig both mediates and echoes the creative process: validating formations, rather than just accepting forms as being constant and unalienable. Some of the selected works do this by dismantling or fragmenting objects or systems - and some by objectifying or formalising what would otherwise be intangible. By questioning and interrogating all things, we might come to a new and enlightened understanding about our relationship to the world around us and each other.