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“Significant Other” – exhibition

December 17, 2020 - February 1, 2021


Artists: Martyna Czech, Regina Jose Galindo, Maria Luigia Gioffre, Jakub Gliński, Fabiola Larios

Curator: Dobrosława Nowak

Recent offbeat circumstances and heart-breaking restrictions highlighted a few curious human behaviors. Among them, acts of constant self-face-touching. Scientists took a closer look at the case. Why do we humans, as well as other primates, passionately touch our faces at very high frequency? Researchers dug into a functional purpose or antecedents of this behavior. According to the hypothesis presented in their article published on 20 April 2020 (1), self-face-touching serves as self-smelling. But we not only smell ourselves. People may constantly but subconsciously sniff their hands after a handshake to get a sense of the other person. During the time when handshakes are discouraged to prevent the spread of coronavirus, and we are challenged not to touch our faces, this finding takes on much greater importance. 

What else happened to the interpersonal relationships during the pandemic? On one hand, some undecided couples got closer, sometimes affected by a joint quarantining. On the other hand, some relationships couldn’t last anymore, a few people were even geographically disconnected. There are as many cases as there are people. Love and relationships are always a current topic. Yet, they are rarely exposed to such a sudden flipping in the world order.

According to the dictionary, Significant other (SO) is colloquially used as a term for a person’s partner in an intimate relationship without disclosing or presuming anything about marital status, relationship status, gender identity, or sexual orientation. Some synonyms are sweetheart, better half, spouse, lover, soulmate, life partner. The exhibition’s title is inspired by this particular combination of two elements of this expression: “Significant” – important, meaningful, and “Other” – different, distant. Artists invited to take part in the exhibition express their ideas of love and relationships, telling their stories with various mediums and approaches.

Collective exhibition online


December 17, 2020
February 1, 2021
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