Once we enter the room, we are invited to leave any type of complex behind and centre our energy towards our own inner exploration. We find ourselves surrounded by a viva magenta velvet floor, a colour which serves as a symbol of strength and optimism, a transformative red tone which welcomes self-expression, inclusivity and strength. Deep industrial sounds resonate across the room, at the centre we see a figure, Ana Sting sits on a red chair holding a sign with the words “Who are You?”. We are invited to sit and listen to an audio recording designed to make us self-reflect on our own inner struggles and battles.The performance begins. This is part of artist and photographer Ana Sting's 1:11 - Inner Personalities, her first solo exhibition and live performance available by appointment till December 8th at Plataforma2 in Barcelona.
Sting decides to return to her hometown with this extremely personal exhibition, the multidisciplinary artist likes to focus her work around concepts dealing with spirituality, identity, womanhood, and, activism. Best known for her photography and video direction, she has worked alongside Rosalía, Jorja Smith, Dua Lipa, and Idris Elba to name a few. In her latest endeavour, she wishes to challenge stereotypes and eradicate the feelings of prejudice that result from misconceptions surrounding mental health.
The exhibition is made out of a series of eight self-portraits that serve as an exaggerated portrayal of the many characters which struggle to co-exist within her inner psyche. Each portrait deals with a separate and intrinsic identity which Sting has used to shelter herself from her own realities. Throughout her youth, Sting has had to silence and repress her own emotions due to imposed societal hierarchies. Now, she wants to use her art as a medium in which viewers can rethink societal norms, eradicate stigmas, and explore their own identity.
Through the development of the different self-portraits Sting used the process behind every image as an opportunity to heal and come to terms with some of the darkest and most hurtful feelings which had been repressed within her. Once she was able to embrace all of her inner personalities she freed herself from all sorts of preconceptions, finally being able to let go, laugh and enjoy each one of them accordingly.
Sting sees her art as a tool used to heal her inner self. The perfect method in which to externalise her inner universe to the outside world. Nonetheless, in her new exhibition, she skilfully manages to shift the narrative and use her art to provoke a reaction from the viewer. Transforming her portraits into a healing journey where the viewer is invited to reflect on who they are, creating a mirror for the soul, a safe space for viewers to question and explore their inner emotions.
1:11 - Inner Personalities plays tribute to all those who feel like they do not belong, to everyone who has struggled to perform a simple task because they were anxious, to the strong souls who couldn't get out of bed because they were depressed, and to all the over-thinkers who still struggles to find the answer to the simple question: who are you?
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Ana Sting's exhibition 1:11 - Inner Personalities is now available by appointment at Plataforma2 in Barcelona until December 8.