A comparison between oceanic and land-based identities, two prisms through which you can see yourself in relation to the world, forms the starting point for the 9th Satellite programme.
While land-based identity hinges on an inward-looking worldview that is concerned with finite space demarcated by borders and sovereignty, oceanic identity is radically different. An identity associated with water space entails a fluid, inclusive, expansive, outward-looking perspective that focuses on horizons and what lies beyond them. From this vantage point, selfhood is defined by navigation and movement in a reversal of a static interpretation of space.
In traditional Western cartography, water space tends to be considered merely as a lack of land, governed by unruly forces. Looking at the ocean’s body of water as real territory, on the contrary, offers an alternative terrain of unified space that is characterized by free navigation, as opposed to land-based territory, which is ruled in an ‘orderly’ manner by a historically perpetuated logic of defining and policing state borders that gives way to geopolitical tension.
Artists Edgardo Aragon, Patrick Bernier & Olive Martin, Guan Xiao and Basim Magdy navigate definitions of the self that are not bound to traditional dichotomies but are hybrid. This series of four solo exhibitions proposes alternative formations that do not adhere to conventional ideas of restrictive cartography. They instead adopt more fluid notions of belonging that propose a different geographic and political imaginary altogether.