Philipp von Rosen, Cologne
In 2016 Anna Malagrida won the Carte Blanche PMU award. PMU is a company that operates betting offices throughout France. Malagrida shows and criticizes the company in whose betting offices the protagonists of her work are located. She points the fragility of the gamblers’ hopes and dreams that are inherent parts of their bets.
In order to do so, Malagrida draws upon photography, text and video to envision the pauperization experienced within the betting shop. On the right wall of the booth, a large scale photograph Vitre I – shot from the street and through the large window –shows a monotonous moment and the patient waiting of a gambler.
Inside the store Malagrida met the gamblers – a large majority of them are North African migrants hoping to escape poverty in our rich societies – and listened to them attentively, collected and archived their thoughts. Only one of them allowed her to film him; we see him watching a horse race (and obviously losing the bet) in a video that shall be installed on the left wall of the booth.
With the photographic series Les Mains, Malagrida observes the hands of the gamblers up close. For Malagrida, this imagery of hands does not have a predefined structure, nor does it form a logical system.
The gestures are ordinary, sometimes related to activities carried out by a gambler, but sometimes this meaning comes up rather involuntary. The verbalized thoughts Malagrida archived, are shown as bubbles floating on the walls executed with adhesive lettering.