General Spoils

Laura Porter

7 February — 21 March 2019

The word ‘General’ can be an honorific, so ‘Spoils’ would be the last name of a military officer. Otherwise, ‘General Spoils’ could be read as surplus at large that has been stolen, come upon, or produced.
– Laura Porter
In the Flemish legend of the baker of Eeklo, the Eeklo residents, when unsatisfied with their heads, would visit the baker of the village for a replacement. He would first cut off their heads at the neck and then stop-up the hemorrhaging with a cabbage while the new ones were being shaped and cooked. The gamble in this new-heading was that the replacement itself might over or under cook or otherwise get misshapen in the oven. 

For her solo exhibition at In Extenso, Laura Porter presents General Spoils a new series of works that deals with similar themes of eaten/uneaten food stuffs, material origins, the sorting out of the edible, food as an icon and object of contemplation, and the dispersion and projections of a body in a productive process.  Cornhusks, cinnamon rolls, turnips, black-eyed peas, cornucopias, tapiocas, brushes, brooms and vacuums are the main characters.

The floor compositions create systems of relations, where objects and images reveal intrinsic frictions. Natural and synthetic materials are coupled together; polished surfaces meet rough, brittle ones. Each work is a whole that relates in humoristic or mimetic ways without losing its singularity. The materials used (clay, salt, straws, cloth, PVC, plaster, seeds, corn) remain distinct and countable. The choice of mixing stable with perishable elements in the various works underlines an interest for the temporality of objects and materials.

In the basement of the exhibition space, G. Spoils, a video made with French artist, Valentin Lewandowski, stages the cosmetic or comestible transformations of certain materials with an endoscope camera.