24. November 2017
Asad Raza continues his exploration of inhabiting space with social practices, human and non-human beings, and objects. Raza responds to the architecture of the 16th century church by introducing ooring, lines, netting, racquets, iced jasmine tea, scent, and coaches for a tennis-like game. He repurposes the church, a place of messages from higher authorities, into a space of two-way exchange and recreation.
Raza’s involvement in tennis is longstanding; he is an avid player and has written extensively on the subject. Here he reorients the sport as a re ection on the importance of non-productive activities in a society focused on work. For Raza, the game serves as a method of absorbing energetic drives into symbolic but non-harmful practices.
Visitors to Untitled (plot for dialogue) become more than spectators— practicing with the coaches, they inhabit their bodies in coordinated action. Players respond to each other through the medium of the ball and the plot
of the court. The piece places the experience of play above purely visual appreciation, as the back-and-forth of tennis exchanges produces meditative beauty through actions never to be repeated.
Images: Installation view, Asad Raza, Untitled (plot for dialogue), CONVERSO, Milano. Andrea Rossetti