Manifesta purposely strives to keep its distance from what are often seen as the dominant centres of artistic production, instead seeking fresh and fertile terrain for the mapping of a new cultural topography.

Juan Downey, CL

In this complex investigation of signs and symbols based on an essay by Leo Steinberg, the artist worked with a body of narratives and encounters shot in Egypt, Chile and New York. Downey dissects signs in everyday life and the systems of signification in visual art. Everyday signs such as traffic signals are supposed to convey information instantly and clearly, while such visual art works as classical painting resonate with a multiplicity of meanings and ambiguity. But this distinction between simple and complex signification takes numerous twists and turns when the artist subjects some signs and symbols to his personal, subjective associations and intellectual analysis.