Orientalism and Reverse creates an atmosphere of disorientation. The artist brings her camera close to the windows of holiday buses in the hybrid capital of Shanghai. Tourists come in groups and stay for a short moment, in and out. Macedo approaches their vehicle of protection, their moving shells, stubbornly standing in the dirt and dust of unfinished car parks, somewhere beside the spectacle. Within the depicted reflection of each window one is able to recognize traces of an urban environment, which remains rather unspecific, as these traces give no clear indication of the buses’ whereabouts. The depth created here takes the viewer into the picture somewhere behind or between the curtains.
The fabric becomes so vivid that it no longer reads as a tourist bus. This transformation of something fluid into something solid seems like an orientalist manifesto: simultaneously the object of desire becomes overtly clear and unclear. Collecting contemporary moments of collective Chinese identity produces a situation within which you lose your traces. E. W. Said writes in his book “Orientalism” (1978) that notions such as modernity, enlightenment and democracy, are by no means simple and agreed-upon concepts that one does or does not find, (like Easter eggs, in the living room). Rightly so, Macedo approaches somebody else’s window before she enters.
© 2016 Tatiana Macedo
© 2016 Instituto Camões / Kunstraum Botschaft
Text by Susanne Weiß
Coordination by Ana Patrícia Severino
Design by Sena/Luz
Published on the occasion of the exhibition
Orientalism and Reverse, Kunstraum Botschaft, Berlin
Coproduced with GHOST Editions
Printed in Berlin by Rucksaldruck in an edition of 400
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