The title, If you dream of your tongue, beware, is taken from an essay in Eliot Weinberger’s An Elemental Thing. Robles de Medina mirrors Weinberger’s ethnopoetic approach to non-fiction, using sourced information to carefully re-present his Surinamese compatriots in local surroundings. Collaged and/or carefully cropped, these partially obscured figures reveal a dreamlike truth more than they conceal factual information.
Excerpt from Forbes Review of Robles de Medin’as first exhibition at the Catinca Tabacaru Gallery in New York, 2017:
There are some explicitly political aspects in a few of the works, however. One small, untitled work features several silhouettes of, as the artist puts it, “these men with hats,” all sourced from a photo of Javanese immigrants coming into Surinam at the beginning of the 20th century. “This is a literal depiction of the act of immigrating,” says the artist, acknowledging that this process will continue from generation to generation, and will always be contentious, regardless of the flags and landmasses involved.