Monstrous Matter
Publication: 10 Jan 2021
Feature on Dora Budor
Esse Art + Opinion, MontreaL

In recent years, scientists and humanities researchers have started to understand organisms as nodes in complex networks—networks so intricate that it’s impossible to distinguish where an organism begins or ends. As humanity deals with the SARS-CoV-2 outbreak, the porosity of being seems as relevant as it is unsettling. Exposing the precarity of the interconnectedness of our biological lives, the pandemic reminds us that symbiotic relations are constantly renewed and negotiated, and when conditions suddenly shift, once life-sustaining relations can become deadly. Although this realization may seem new for the vast majority of people, artists have developed practices deeply rooted in making sense of life’s entanglements. The author explores the ways in which Croatian artist Dora Budor’s recent works speak to the interconnectedness of matter from biological and historical points of view, revealing how it helps us make sense of the messy and troubled times we find ourselves in.

Dora BudorThe Forecast (New York Situation),2017,  installation view, Mutations, High Line, New York,2017–2018.Photo : Timothy Schenck, courtesy of the artist & High Line, New York