Federico Clavarino and Tami Izko – Eel Soup
Witty Books 2022
Picture an eel soup: a wriggling mass of creatures whose ends and beginnings can be swapped in the human eye, trapped in a limited space, their bodies entangled below the surface or floating on top of it, half submerged in a hot broth.
Like the visible bits of the viscous animals you have just imagined, the objects presented in this book are fragments of an ephemeral reality. By carefully observing spaces and body parts as they twist, press, open, close, bend and touch, photography and clay have become Federico Clavarino and Tami Izko’s means to reinterpret a series of meaningful connections. The resulting series ultimately tells a story of coexistence, one that is largely built around the lingering images left behind by otherwise vanishing intersections.
The book version of this work, which has been exhibited on multiple occasions, weaves together several of its ramifications: installation views, images of the studio the artists shared in Milan, photographs of the sculptures and sculptures made out of photographs. The book also documents its own coming into existence by featuring images of the wall that was used to work on its sequencing, as well as interviews the artists conducted with one another. The book itself, like a bowl full of eel soup, challenges our faculty of telling things apart from each other, be they people, artworks or other forms of life.