GEORGIANA, 2018

The Sea Wall, Ponta Delgado Harbour, San Miguel, Azores

Commissioned by Dani Admiss for the Public Program of the Walk & Talk Festival

Along the wall of Ponta Delgada harbour, the international maritime signal flag alphabet spells out the words ‘Georgiana Leonard’. Leonard was one of the few women ever to be found posing as a male sailor on a whaling ship crossing the Atlantic in the 19th century.

Painted in large scale on the harbour wall, in its entirety the words are visible only to those physically on the water who understand a sailor’s lingua franca, continuing Leonard’s presence as one that goes partially or temporarily unnoticed.

In her work, Navine Khan Dossos examines how social, linguistic and algorithmic codes and their communication are hidden and reinterpreted through actions and gestures. A painter, she often draws on geometric abstraction, deriving from Islamic art or computation, to explore the informational properties of how we exchange information and ideas with others.

In GEORGIANA, Dossos revisits a recurring theme in her work, exploring how women have navigated hyper-masculine spaces across history, adapting their bodies and embodying certain behaviours and patterns to temporarily transform their public identity and appearance.