Jeannette Unite’s solo show proposes an investigation on the processes of visualisation, surveillance and codification of territory and the materiality of capital, taking as a starting point the South African mining history. In her artworks, industrial history is being turned into a personal archeology of the country’s fraught colonial past. Her artistic research on mining, local geological strata and industrial machineries opens wider thematization of the post-colonial condition and the effects of modernity.
The exhibition setting uses various media and visual instruments such as painting, drawing, and a photographic archive which supported her research in order to reflect on broader topics such as the post-industrial condition, the anthropocene of the material history of global capitalism.
The selected artworks are similar in size and are usually made by manual intervention on a photographic image or a painterly reproduced archival document with precious materials and detritus extracted from the represented mining sites. Thus, they are constructing non-places of memory, situated at the intersection between nostalgia and utopia, between personal memory and collective memory. The thus obtained self-referentiality of the images paradoxically undermines the impersonal logic exemplified by the seriality of the artworks exhibited in grids, opening new forms of negotiation of the common.