©SABOT 2023


Construction work: the pornography of world peace

May 29th - June 26th, 2010

Sabot is pleased to present three of the most intriguing works by Swedish artist Maja Borg.

Born in Norrköping (Sweden), in 1982, visual artist and film director, additionally working as director of photography, dramaturg and creative editor, Maja Borg is based in both Sweden and the UK. Her works have been exhibited at major festivals and venues throughout Europe, including Momentum, the 5th Nordic Biennial of Contemporary Art, in 2009, and East Wing Collection biennial 7: Culture Bound, 2006-2007 (placed amongst Turner Prize artists, Maja Borg was the youngest artist ever to exhibit at Courtauld Institute).

The work of Maja Borg exists at the intersection of documentary, fiction and experimental film fusing the languages of these genres into a compelling, visually rich and politically astute body of work. Borg’s films are as likely to be seen in film festivals or television as they are in the visual arts context. The artist uniquely succeeds in defying genre expectations and her language seamlessly combines elements of animation, experimental camera and sound techniques with tools of documentary filmmaking. Her films have tackled subjects ranging from investigations of myths and traditions, borders of desire and violence and, most recently, urgent contemporary issues such as the crisis of capitalism and the global environmental and economic downturn, investigating what options one has in such a dystopian landscape. (Lina Dzuverovic, co-founder and Director of Electra – contemporary art agency, London)

For a long time I was consumed with anger. I was angry with ‘the system’ and those systems and categorisations that were placed upon me. Systems suffocated me by stuffing me in pigeonholes, trying to fit me in to moulds that were someone else’s shape, or forcing me to lay my piece in an unjust puzzle. I was angry because these systems reduced me to an egocentric cultural construct, limited to the narrow human mind.
On the other side of these systems I found total chaos. Encompassing all, unsupportive of organized thought, madness if you like, freedom if you can.
I found both of these extremes, complete order and complete chaos, equally frightening but the journey between them utterly beautiful. I stopped being angry, at least all of the time.
We need to create systems in order to think, in order to communicate with each other, to live together and to interfere with nature. Our spoken language, cultural codes, economic and political systems, religions, sexuality, science; it is all derelict poetry.
This is all that we have and it leaves us in an incredibly empowering position. As long as we remain humble to the fact that we do not know it all, we can be in a process of constantly recreating these systems, each time expanding a little, each time including a few more, encompassing a little more of the chaos, and each time giving ourselves those moments of beauty.
In this exhibition I am examining two of these systems in particular; the economic - Ottica Zero, and the sexual - On Your Back Woman!. I have also invited three of my fellow artists to explore the need to create systems in itself - Construct – Two Moments In Beauty.
(Maja Borg)
On Your Back Woman! (by Wolf Madame)
2009, Feature film, Short film, 5 min.

A futile sadomasochistic contest that leaves us in a burlesque dance of willpower, a violent yet tender pornographic comedy of five women finding the limit of their own compassion, pain and physical strength.

Construct - Two Moments in Beauty
2007, Experimental, 6 min.

An artist collaboration, exploring the human tendency of systemizing in order to understand and/or control the world. The film is a result of conversations about the destructive and reconstructive effects we encounter, privately and in history, when trying to apply our ideas about the world upon the reality of it.
The process is a dynamic dialogue between sound and image. In the final installation there are three different soundscapes by three different artists from different parts of the world, each one adding their own meaning to the repeated images by Swedish filmmaker Maja Borg.
The idea is to filmically systemise our tendency to create system, and since this is a contradictory task, the artists work from simplified timeline, focusing on the points of beauty found in this process.

Ottica Zero
2007, Documentary, 13 min.

Soon after her ‘big break’, Italian actress Nadya Cazan disappeared. With TV and film offers flooding in, she refused to accept the competitive and superficial values of the society they represented. Ottica Zero follows Nadya on her search to find an alternative way of living; a quest to discover a means to recycle the whole spectrum of cultures and political ideologies into a new way of managing a global society. It is a journey which takes us from Rome to Venus, where 93-year-old social innovator and futurist, Jacques Fresco, proposes a solution.