PopCretinho bouclier triangulaire, 2021
 Aluminium 102 x 45 x 13 cm

Last month to see “Porno Chic”, by Lyz Parayzo

(Geneve, Switzerland)

Lyz Parayzo presents PORNO CHIC until June 19th in the spaces of the Espace L gallery, in Genève, Switzerland. The artist brings together works from different moments of her young career. It features two photographs from the Secagem Rápida series from 2015 (her first series to be censored in an art exhibition), a video titled “Papai está descansando” from 2016 (created from the artist’s readings of the book Manifesto contra-sexual of the Spanish philosopher Paul B. Preciado) and sculptures in cut aluminum from the series “Bixinhas”,  “Móbiles” and “PopCretinhos”. These last works were produced, in part, during an artistic residency in the city of Porto in October and November 2020 as well as in the workshops of the École Supérieure Beaux-Arts in Paris. By crossing different languages ​​such as video installation, screen printing, sculpture, and photography, the artist seeks to renew her critical reading of modernist traditions through the prism, more narrative and biographical, questions of gender and identity politics.

The title PORNO CHIC brings us first of all to the vocabulary of contemporary visual culture. It is reminiscent of the fashion world of the 90s adopting an aggressive advertising strategy by the use of images whose transgression was immediately converted into a weapon of mass seduction. The phrase circulated when American stylist Tom Ford took over the creative head of an Italian luxury brand (Gucci, not to name it) and teamed up with photographers Mario Testino and Terry Richardson to develop advertising campaigns based on shots with a strong erotic charge, in sophisticated breaks with often phallocratic connotations. The comments of the time (for Yves Saint Laurent, “le porno chic, it’s ignominy ”) noted an absorption by the dominant culture of images from the proliferation of pornography favored by the circulating images of digital networks. The trademark of “chic porn” ended up objectifying the female body in the tacit alliance between economic liberalism and the commodification of sexuality (we will speak, like Brian McNair, of “pornification” of Western culture). At first glance, Chic Porn, as a business strategy for transgression, has nothing to do with sexual inclusion, the rights of women and racial minorities. The trademark of “chic porn” ended up objectifying the female body in the tacit alliance between economic liberalism and the commodification of sexuality (we will speak, like Brian McNair, of “pornification” of Western culture).

Lyz Parayzo’s work, based on her personal experience of the fluidity of genres – and the “ordinary” attacks that this sexual ambivalence arouses in social space – reminds us how much the faculty of self-defense is a criterion used to (de) distinguish between those who are fully subjects and those who are not. Its metal sculptures with sharp walls, its aluminum shields in their capacity to attack the physical space of those who want to approach it, highlight the reversibility of this “endangerment” to better reveal the vulnerability of dissident bodies. The questions raised by this activist approach flourish like refractory plants: Who is the person called to “defend themselves”? Where are deployed, explicitly or implicitly, the arrangements of violence? What can we do with the weakened brutality of the minority or seditious body in its ambiguity? Can art be a place of renegotiation of domination?

PORNO CHIC, solo show by Lyz Parayzo
From May 6th to June 29th, 2021

Espace L gallery
23 rue des Bains, 1205 – Genève – CH
+41 79 8187182
From Tuesday to Saturday, 11 am to 6 pm


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