Hironaka & Suib | Vanitas MMXVIII, 2019
Nadia Hironaka and Matthew Suib employ the tools and conventions of moving-image culture to offer counter-mythical visions of our contemporary world. Hironaka & Suib continue the centuries-old genre of still life painting, vanitas, in their massive video projection Vanitas MMXVlll. Here, common still-life motifs are completely unmoored from their tabletop arrangement. Bruised, molding and half-eaten fruit, broken glass and mirror, wilting flowers and skulls tumble slowly upwards. Vanitas MMXVlll destabilizes the traditional still-life subjects to reflect our current cultural moment, where formerly stable institutions that once embodied shared values are undermined while pride and avarice have been elevated to virtues.