Congratulations to Teresa Margolles on the opening of Te alineas o te alineamos (You fall in line or they put you line), on view from September 28, 2019 through January 5, 2020 at BPS22: Musée d'art de la Province de Hainaut in Charleroi, Belgium. This is the artist’s first solo exhibition in the country.
Te alineas o te alineamos is a continuation of Teresa Margolles's Decálogo, first exhibited in 2007 at the Museo Experimental El Eco in Mexico City. In the Old Testament, the Decalogue refers to the ten commandments engraved “with God’s finger” in stone. Teresa Margolles’s Decálogo is composed of ten messages left by drug traffickers at the sites of murders. Widely disseminated by the media, the messages were intended as much for society as a whole as they were for the enemies of the drug cartels.
Te alineas o te alineamos is the 8th commandment of this Decalogue. Engraved on the largest wall in the museum, it evokes the state of Mexico of today, where much of the rule of law is dictated by organized crime, but it also hints at other forms of subjugation, such as the laws of an exploitative global market. As the title of the exhibition, this threat reverberates throughout the works on display as a warning, but it also calls into question different forms of submission and resistance.
Alongside existing works, this exhibition presents a new body of work conceived by Margolles for BPS22 and created in response to Charleroi itself. Teresa Margolles was stricken by the urban landscape of industrial remains, buildings and businesses that have been abandoned or are undergoing demolition. She has created artwork that reflects both the city’s economic decline and its ongoing transformation, which is also contributing its share to the marginalization of individuals in social sub-groups. For this show, Margolles worked collaboratively with displaced individuals she has met in the street. By featuring their faces and their words in the institutional space of the museum, Margolles seeks to restore their dignity and combat the trivialization of social exclusion.