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“When I moved from Tangier to New York in 2012, my galleries were a bit concerned: what would I have to say, once I no longer lived atop the source of all my preoccupations? I discovered there was Another Tangier. An island in Chesapeake bay of Virginia, just a few hours drive from NYC... and a little research revealed that not only did this Tangier have a particular name – it was, like the Moroccan version, one of the more interesting places on earth.

The landmass these Tangiermen inhabit has shrunk 67% since climate change began; scientists predict that the town will surrender to the rising sea levels in the coming decades.

The population of around 500 mostly subsist from soft-shell crabs and tourism. When I visited though, the most striking aspect of Tangier was that I couldn’t understand anything they said.

This insular culture has preserved a heirloom variety of British-English, spiced with the twang of the American South, rendered even more impenetrable by a local idiomatic patois. An unattractive person “ain’t hard favored;” to a smelly person, you might say “Wait a bit, you’re sweet!” And best of all, of a woman who, like me, talks a lot, Tangiermen would say: “She could talk a flood tide down.”

 

Yto Barrada

Continental Drift

Year: 2021
Medium: Super 8mm and 16mm, transferred to digital 24 minutes 09 seconds
Edition of 3

Yto Barrada

Continental Drift

Year: 2021
Medium: Super 8mm and 16mm, transferred to digital 24 minutes 09 seconds
Edition of 3

Goodman Gallery is pleased to present She Could Talk a Flood Tide Down, Yto Barrada’s first solo exhibition in Johannesburg and the first with the gallery. By bringing together diverse projects, the exhibition highlights Barrada’s long-established interest in alternative forms of learning, such as mnemonics and spaces of play, as a valuable source of knowledge. The exhibition coincides with Barrada’s solo presentation at The Massachusetts Museum of Contemporary Art, Yto Barrada: Ways to Baffle the Wind, on view until July 2023.

She Could Talk a Flood Tide Down engages different aspects of language and play — and through humour allows for deeper reflection and a closer reading of objects, materials and processes.

Yto Barrada

Continental Drift

Year: 2021
Medium: Super 8mm and 16mm, transferred to digital 24 minutes 09 seconds
Edition of 3

Yto Barrada

Continental Drift

Year: 2021
Medium: Super 8mm and 16mm, transferred to digital 24 minutes 09 seconds
Edition of 3

The exhibition includes the much-anticipated film Continental Drift (2021). The film-collage assembles Super 8mm film diaries, footage taken over eight years across the US and Morocco, including the rituals of the Grand Socco plaza, home of the Cinematheque de Tanger, the arthouse and cultural center which Barrada founded in 2006. The film also offers a first glimpse of The Mothership, a forest garden and botanical garden of dye plants, and artist residency, founded by the artist. Continental Drift also introduces Tangier characters like the Public Writer; and, as narrator of sorts, an english autodidact who collects Magic Lantern slides and channels local history. In a brief, chilling sequence, the camera has a close encounter with the aging thug who ‘disappeared” Barrada’s own grandfather in the 1950’s. 

The intersection of cinema and the archive, themes that often recur in her practice, bring attention to the rigidity of zones and territories while also considering the struggles of sovereignty and migratory flows. 

Yto Barrada

Continental Drift

Year: 2021
Medium: Super 8mm and 16mm, transferred to digital 24 minutes 09 seconds
Edition of 3

Yto Barrada

Continental Drift

Year: 2021
Medium: Super 8mm and 16mm, transferred to digital 24 minutes 09 seconds
Edition of 3

Yto Barrada 

Untitled (She Could Talk A Flood Tide Down)

2021
Pigment print
40.6 x 25.7 cm / 24.3 x 16.4 in.

Edition of 3

Yto Barrada

Untitled (She Could Talk A Flood Tide Down)

2021
Pigment print
40.6 x 25.7 cm / 24.3 x 16.4 in.

Edition of 3

Yto Barrada

Tree Identification for Beginners

Year: 2017
Medium: 16mm film, transferred to digital, color, sound 36 minutes

Tree Identification for Beginners was part of Barrada’s commission for Performa 17: Afroglossia, curated by Adrienne Edwards

Yto Barrada

Tree Identification for Beginners

Year: 2017
Medium: 16mm film, transferred to digital, color, sound 36 minutes

Tree Identification for Beginners was part of Barrada’s commission for Performa 17: Afroglossia, curated by Adrienne Edwards

In the turbulent summer of 1966,Yto Barrada’s mother, a 23-year-old Moroccan student, was one of 50 ‘Young African Leaders’ invited on a State Department–sponsored tour of the USA.Through play, poetry, and humor, the film Tree Identification for Beginners examines this stage- managed encounter between North America and Africa, and the nascent spirit of disobedience – the Pan-African,Tricontinental, Black Power, and anti-Vietnam war movements – that would come to define a generation.The film brings together 16mm stop-motion animation of Montessori educational toys with voiceovers from Barrada’s mother and other Crossroads Africa participants, as well as historic figures such as Civil Rights activist Stokely Carmichael.The audio effects were created by Barrada and professional Foley artists using noise-making tools in a sound studio.Tree Identification for Beginners also embodies Barrada’s research into form, abstraction, and spatial organization; the installation includes curtains hand- stitched with Montessori grammatical symbols and dyed with pre-industrial colors.

The Moroccan-French artist’s first performance abstractly combines archival research, family history, film, textile painting, and toys to explore the story of her mother’s coming to terms with Pan-African and Black Power political movements while visiting the U.S. in 1966, as part of the Operation Crossroads Africa program.

Yto Barrada

Plumber Assemblage, Fig.1 - 10, Tangier

2014

Gelatin silver print
Work 1 to 10: 50 x 50 cm (each)
Framed 1 to 10: 52.8 x 52.8 cm (each)

Edition of 2

Yto Barrada

Plumber Assemblage, Fig.1 - 10, Tangier

2014

Gelatin silver print
Work 1 to 10: 50 x 50 cm (each)
Framed 1 to 10: 52.8 x 52.8 cm (each)

Edition of 2

The series of photographs, Plumber Assemblage, Fig.1 - 10, Tangier (2014) considers the romanticism attached to objects characterized as ‘foreign’ and through this process, examines how value is assigned. Found objects such as pipes, faucets, and spigots, which are reused in assemblages by plumbers to advertise their services, are placed outside of their typical context in poses that reconfigure their meaning. 

Within the exhibition, Barrada considers the  history of place through a reflection on water  and land — land reshaped by water; sinking  islands and cities at risk of disappearing —  through the lens of children’s participation  in the construction of the world, inspired by  artist Simon Nicholson’s 1971 anti-elitist essay,  “How NOT to Cheat Children: The Theory of  Loose Parts.” 

 

Yto Barrada

Untitled (Pillbox Casa Barragán series)
2019
Acrylic paint and wallpaper paste on paper 52.4 x 42.5 x 3.8 cm / 14.8 x 11 in

Yto Barrada

Untitled (Pillbox Casa Barragán series)
2019
Acrylic paint and wallpaper paste on paper 52.4 x 42.5 x 3.8 cm / 14.8 x 11 in

Thumb-Show

Thumb-Show Thumbnails
yto barrada - plumber assemblages

Yto Barrada

Plumber Assemblage, Fig.1 - 10, Tangier

2014

Gelatin silver print
Work 1 to 10: 50 x 50 cm (each)
Framed 1 to 10: 52.8 x 52.8 cm (each)

Edition of 2

yto barrada - plumber assemblages

Yto Barrada

Plumber Assemblage, Fig.1 - 10, Tangier

2014

Gelatin silver print
Work 1 to 10: 50 x 50 cm (each)
Framed 1 to 10: 52.8 x 52.8 cm (each)

Edition of 2

yto barrada - plumber assemblages

 

Yto Barrada

Plumber Assemblage, Fig.1 - 10, Tangier

2014

Gelatin silver print
Work 1 to 10: 50 x 50 cm (each)
Framed 1 to 10: 52.8 x 52.8 cm (each)

Edition of 2

yto barrada - plumber assemblages

Yto Barrada

Plumber Assemblage, Fig.1 - 10, Tangier

2014

Gelatin silver print
Work 1 to 10: 50 x 50 cm (each)
Framed 1 to 10: 52.8 x 52.8 cm (each)

Edition of 2

yto barrada - plumber assemblages

Yto Barrada

Plumber Assemblage, Fig.1 - 10, Tangier

2014

Gelatin silver print
Work 1 to 10: 50 x 50 cm (each)
Framed 1 to 10: 52.8 x 52.8 cm (each)

Edition of 2

yto barrada - plumber assemblages

Yto Barrada

Plumber Assemblage, Fig.1 - 10, Tangier

2014

Gelatin silver print
Work 1 to 10: 50 x 50 cm (each)
Framed 1 to 10: 52.8 x 52.8 cm (each)

Edition of 2

yto barrada - plumber assemblages

Yto Barrada

Plumber Assemblage, Fig.1 - 10, Tangier

2014

Gelatin silver print
Work 1 to 10: 50 x 50 cm (each)
Framed 1 to 10: 52.8 x 52.8 cm (each)

Edition of 2

yto barrada - plumber assemblages

Yto Barrada

Plumber Assemblage, Fig.1 - 10, Tangier

2014

Gelatin silver print
Work 1 to 10: 50 x 50 cm (each)
Framed 1 to 10: 52.8 x 52.8 cm (each)

Edition of 2

yto barrada - plumber assemblages

Yto Barrada

Plumber Assemblage, Fig.1 - 10, Tangier

2014

Gelatin silver print
Work 1 to 10: 50 x 50 cm (each)
Framed 1 to 10: 52.8 x 52.8 cm (each)

Edition of 2

yto barrada - plumber assemblages

Yto Barrada

Plumber Assemblage, Fig.1 - 10, Tangier

2014

Gelatin silver print
Work 1 to 10: 50 x 50 cm (each)
Framed 1 to 10: 52.8 x 52.8 cm (each)

Edition of 2

yto barrada - plumber assemblages

Yto Barrada

Plumber Assemblage, Fig.1 - 10, Tangier

2014

Gelatin silver print
Work 1 to 10: 50 x 50 cm (each)
Framed 1 to 10: 52.8 x 52.8 cm (each)

Edition of 2

yto barrada - plumber assemblages

 

Yto Barrada

Plumber Assemblage, Fig.1 - 10, Tangier

2014

Gelatin silver print
Work 1 to 10: 50 x 50 cm (each)
Framed 1 to 10: 52.8 x 52.8 cm (each)

Edition of 2

yto barrada - plumber assemblages

Yto Barrada

Plumber Assemblage, Fig.1 - 10, Tangier

2014

Gelatin silver print
Work 1 to 10: 50 x 50 cm (each)
Framed 1 to 10: 52.8 x 52.8 cm (each)

Edition of 2

yto barrada - plumber assemblages

Yto Barrada

Plumber Assemblage, Fig.1 - 10, Tangier

2014

Gelatin silver print
Work 1 to 10: 50 x 50 cm (each)
Framed 1 to 10: 52.8 x 52.8 cm (each)

Edition of 2

yto barrada - plumber assemblages

Yto Barrada

Plumber Assemblage, Fig.1 - 10, Tangier

2014

Gelatin silver print
Work 1 to 10: 50 x 50 cm (each)
Framed 1 to 10: 52.8 x 52.8 cm (each)

Edition of 2

yto barrada - plumber assemblages

Yto Barrada

Plumber Assemblage, Fig.1 - 10, Tangier

2014

Gelatin silver print
Work 1 to 10: 50 x 50 cm (each)
Framed 1 to 10: 52.8 x 52.8 cm (each)

Edition of 2

yto barrada - plumber assemblages

Yto Barrada

Plumber Assemblage, Fig.1 - 10, Tangier

2014

Gelatin silver print
Work 1 to 10: 50 x 50 cm (each)
Framed 1 to 10: 52.8 x 52.8 cm (each)

Edition of 2

yto barrada - plumber assemblages

Yto Barrada

Plumber Assemblage, Fig.1 - 10, Tangier

2014

Gelatin silver print
Work 1 to 10: 50 x 50 cm (each)
Framed 1 to 10: 52.8 x 52.8 cm (each)

Edition of 2

Yto Barrada

Land and Water Forms (for Bettina)

2019
Ten acrylic and gesso on cardboard 49.5 x 49.5 x 3.8 cm / 16.7 x 16.7 in.

Work: 42.5 x 42.5 cm (each)
Frame: 49.5 x 49.5 x 3.8 cm (each)

Yto Barrada

Land and Water Forms (for Bettina)

2019
Ten acrylic and gesso on cardboard 49.5 x 49.5 x 3.8 cm / 16.7 x 16.7 in.

Work: 42.5 x 42.5 cm (each)
Frame: 49.5 x 49.5 x 3.8 cm (each)

Land and Water Forms is a series of paintings inspired by Montessori school practices, used to teach children about geography through visual inversion. In the works, landforms are paired and transposed — island/lake, archipelago/lake system, isthmus/canal —drawing attention to the interconnections between physical structures and substances of the earth.

Yto Barrada

Mnemonic Phrases

2019

Prints
Work: 48.3 x 31.8 cm (each)

Edition of 25

Yto Barrada

Mnemonic Phrases

2019

Prints
Work: 48.3 x 31.8 cm (each)

Edition of 25

Through humour, works such as Mnemonic  Phrases (2019) explore mnemonic devices beyond their linguistic function, placing them within the rhythm of history where found sentences, much like found objects,  perform themselves. Fragments of materials interact with each other as self-made tools that inspire new techniques — for instance,  cardboard cutouts from the collaged works in Grinding Teeth (2020)  are often used as paintbrushes to create other paintings, suggesting synchronicity across mediums.

Yto Barrada

Velvet collage #2

2019
Two silk velvet dyes from plant extracts mounted on board

Frame 1 to 2: 64.8 x 89.5 x 4.4 cm

Yto Barrada

Velvet collage #2

2019
Two silk velvet dyes from plant extracts mounted on board

Frame 1 to 2: 64.8 x 89.5 x 4.4 cm

Salient to Barrada’s practice are concepts of  pleasure, discovery and analysis, which are  formulated through key works that experiment  with materials (rust, cotton, natural dyes) and  traditional processes. Her methodology is  influenced by her background in history and  political science. By using visual, textual and  sculptural relics, the exhibition finds points of  anchorage in historical narrative and aesthetic  imagination and simultaneously condenses  and stretches the frame of time.

Yto Barrada

Velvet Collage

2021
Silk velvet dyes from plant extracts mounted on board

Work: 76.2 x 57.2 cm

Yto Barrada

Velvet Collage

2021
Silk velvet dyes from plant extracts mounted on board

Work: 76.2 x 57.2 cm

Slide-Show

Slide-Show Thumbnails
Grinding Teeth (Paste Paper Tools) (TBC), 2021 artworks

Yto Barrada

Grinding Teeth (Paste Paper Tools)

2021

Acrylic and gesso on cardboard 
Frame: 84.1 x 57.8 x 5.1 cm

Grinding Teeth (Paste Paper Tools) (TBC), 2021 artworks

Yto Barrada

Grinding Teeth (Paste Paper Tools)

2021

Acrylic and gesso on cardboard 
Frame: 84.1 x 57.8 x 5.1 cm

Grinding Teeth (Paste Paper Tools) (TBC), 2021 artworks

Yto Barrada

Grinding Teeth (Paste Paper Tools)

2021

Acrylic and gesso on cardboard 
Frame: 84.1 x 57.8 x 5.1 cm

Grinding Teeth (Paste Paper Tools) (TBC), 2021 artworks

Yto Barrada

Grinding Teeth (Paste Paper Tools)

2021

Acrylic and gesso on cardboard 
Frame: 84.1 x 57.8 x 5.1 cm