Paul Maheke Biography

Paul Maheke
A light barrel in a river’s mouth

Paul Maheke shares a visual poem, titled A light barrel in a river’s mouth. The work collages research around gravitational waves, cosmology and ghost stories, as well as borrowed material from the Biodiversity Heritage Library and Édouard Glissant’s Poetics of Relation (1990). Acting as an extension of the artist’s performance practice, the page becomes a performative space of its own, in which different narratives, voices and timelines collide. The visual and textual elements of the work do not form a linear perspective, but rather compose an archipelago of various durations and intensities, thereby obscuring the readability of the work and questioning what is left untold and unseen.

Paul Maheke (b.1985, Brive-la-Gaillarde, France) explores the potential of the body as an archive using its corporeality as a pathway to information and knowledge. By speculating on worlds and life elsewhere, the artist draws upon research into alternate universes and creation stories as source material in order to re-articulate and reinvent forms of relationality and representation. Paul completed an MA in Art Practice at ENSAPC, Paris-Cergy, and is a 2015 Open School East alumnus. Recent projects and performances include: Performa 19, Abrons Arts Center, New York; 58th Venice Biennale; Chisenhale Gallery, 5th Block Universe Festival, London. He was nominated for the Fondation Ricard Prize in 2019. A light barrel in a river’s mouth is part of a new body of work, iterations of which will be exhibited at The Renaissance Society, Chicago, and Glasgow International in 2021.