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Dark Testament is an immersive, site-specific installation by British-Liberian conceptual artist Lina Iris Viktor.
Composed around Viktor's evocative Dark Continent series, the exhibition is an excerpt of Autograph's recent exhibition Some Are Born To Endless Night — Dark Matter, and includes image projections of new works produced since.
These extraordinary black and gold works – based on photographs – are infused with the cultural, historical and material implications and multifaceted notions of ‘blackness’: as colour, value and socio-political consciousness
Lina Iris Viktor lives and works itinerantly between New York and London. Raised in London to Liberian parents, she travelled extensively in her youth, and also lived in Johannesburg, South Africa, for several years. Viktor’s multifaceted practice is informed by a background in theatre and film at Sarah Lawrence College, New York, and her continued studies in photography and design at The School of Visual Arts, along with an education in performance arts during high school. Working with a restricted colour palette, her artworks are a blend of photography, performance and abstract painting, along with the ancient practice of gilding with 24-karat gold to create increasingly dark canvases embedded with ‘layers of light’.
Selected solo exhibitions include A Heaven. A Hell. A Dream Deferred, NOMA, New Orleans (2018); The Black Ark, The Armory Show, Mariane Ibrahim Gallery, New York (2018); Black Exodus: Act 1 – Materia Prima, Amar Gallery, London (2017); Arcadia, Gallery 151, New York (2014).
Lina Iris Viktor: Dark Testament is presented in collaboration with Fotographiska
Banner image: Lina Iris Viktor, IV. In Timelessness we Built Our Temple Black. Materia Prima., from From the series Dark Continent: The Seven, 2015-9. Courtesy of the artist and Mariane Ibrahim Gallery.
2-3) Lina Iris Viktor- Dark Testament at Fotografiska Tallinn 21 February - 6 September 2020. Photograph courtesy Tiina-Liina Uudam. 4) Lina Iris Viktor, No. XXVI Refuge from the aftermath . . . A Reckoning to come. [detail] From the series Dark Continent — Act III: The Wake, 2018-9. Courtesy of the artist and Mariane Ibrahim Gallery. 5) Lina Iris Viktor, We are the Night — The Keepers of Light [detail] From the series Dark Continent: Dark Testament, 2015-9. Commissioned by Autograph. Courtesy the artist and Autograph, London. 5) Lina Iris Viktor, NO. XVI COUNTER MEMORIES OF THE HEALER. [deail] From the series DARK CONTINENT XIII - XXIV THE FALL, 2017. Courtesy of the artist and Mariane Ibrahim Gallery. 6) Lina Iris Viktor, III. For a time we hid from ourselves. Our Dark Testament. From the series Dark Continent: Dark Testament, 2015-9. Commissioned by Autograph. Courtesy the artist and Autograph, London. 7) Lina Iris Viktor, NO. IX, RECALL, THE GOLD SIFTED FROM DIR T... From the series DARK CONTINENT I – XII GENESIS, 2016. Courtesy of the artist and Mariane Ibrahim Gallery.