166987 Pricks

Tablecloth with embroidery │ satin, 22k gold embroidery thread │ 2013
Dimension diameter 170 cm

Lana Čmajčanin embroidered messages into a tablecloth with 166,987 pricks of the needle (166987 Pricks, 2013) using lustrous silver thread, with the messages being difficult to decipher. The English word “prick”, used here to denote stitching, is absolutely intended to evoke a vulgar double meaning. Čmajčanin’s text fosters a loop of seemingly uninhibited sexual encroachment and desire, thus arousing passion and rendering situations of public speech in such a way that shame causes a lump in one’s throat. Text, presentation, and materials ambiguously reflect the perennial sexual hierarchies, unreasonable demands, and role allocations to which women in the art world are subjected. Čmajčanin interprets the relationship between work, the (female) creator of art, and the beholder as a public exposition. With an approach that is imaginative and material in equal measure, her many pricks give rise to a counter-site within the art world and nonchalantly illuminate its intrinsic rules.

Excerpt from the text The small i by Dirck Möllmann, The Century of the Bed exhibition catalogue