Candida Powell-Williams

Unreasonable Silence — sold out


Text by Antonia Shaw
Designed by Stinsensqueeze
78 Tarot cards, artist’s book
box 89 mm x 127mm x 50mm
ISBN 978-0-9931563-7-3
£35 / €40 / $50

Out of stock

Candida Powell-Williams has been exploring the cultural heritage of tarot. A longstanding interest in our attempts to navigate the Absurd led her to consider mysticism within storytelling and its meeting point with the mundane materiality of objects. Powell-Williams research, as part of her residency at London’s Warburg Institute, informed the creation of an hourlong performance at the Serpentine Gallery, London in September 2018, where she re-animated the tarot as a three-dimensional space, exploring the encounter between action, storytelling, symbolism and magical thinking. Based on her research and associated performance work, Candida has created her own 78-card Tarot deck, which common-editions will publish this Spring. Unreasonable Silence maps the depiction of archetypes and symbols from classical antiquity to present day whilst drawing influence from the geometric, biomorphic and symbolic language of occult practices. It is customary for decks to include a small book, a manual to guide the reading of the Tarot for divination purposes, and PowellWilliams has re-imagined this format as an artist’s book. This book, housed alongside the Tarot deck within the box, not only offers interpretive notes for the Tarot, it also tracks the development of the artist’s thinking through text and image, each page a collage of photographed surfaces, drawings and symbols. An introductory text by Antonia Shaw contextualises the work within an artistic discourse. This project is supported by Arts Council England and The Warburg Institute.

Candida Powell-Williams graduated from the Royal College of Art, London in 2011 and the Slade School of Fine Art London in 2009. Her sculptural and performance works are a response to researching the slippage that occurs between primary and secondary source material, exploring the consequences of retelling history and how we construct identity through objects and memory. She is currently Artist in Residence at The Warburg Institute London. Selected exhibitions include: Lessness, still quorum, performance, Serpentine Galleries, London (2018); Boredom and its Acid Touch, Frieze Live, London (2017); Tongue Town, Museum of Modern Art, São Paulo (2017); Cache, Art Night Associate Programme, London (2017); Vernacular History of the Golden Rhubarb, Bosse & Baum Gallery, London (2017); PIC performance festival, Melbourne, Australia (2016); Coade’s Elixir-an occupation, Hayward Gallery, London (2014).