Talya Lubinsky’s research based practice employs elemental materials to function as open signifiers for poetic meaning, that give form to specific contexts and histories. In her exhibition, If we burn, there is ash, Johannesburg, 2016, ash and cement are used as materials to investigatethe potential aftermaths of fire and burning in relation to colonial collections of material culture. In Floating Bodies, Bayreuth, 2017, an anecdote from a family archive mobilises the use of sandbags as a metaphor for the human imperative to create barriers against the natural power of a flood, which is imagined here as a force of history. Her current project considers the cemetery as a site in which to explore themes of decay and decomposition, in a landscape that is dedicated to memorialisation and memory.
Lubinsky is an artist from Johannesburg. She is a PhD candidate in the Department of History at the University of the Western Cape, Cape Town, based at the Centre for Humanities Research.