The Illusion of Disillusion, 2013

“In The Illusion of Disillusion, 2013, a swordfish bill is engraved with the nouns of the title; the words are set against each other, reflecting and opposing in turns. Though we may cleave to language - the vessel of ideas - to ward off the compelling spell of appearance, its visualization reveals its own illusory nature.

The sculpture plays with the relationship between materiality and language by applying a synecdoche - a figure of speech in which a part is made to represent the whole - to an object. The gruesomely truncated swordfish’s blade represents the entire animal, it invites the viewer to conjure up its absent, massive body. The status of the fragment is that of something marvelous, a relic from a mythical, submerged realm.”




Nicolas de Oliveira and Nicola Oxley

in “The Missing Subject”, Future Nothingness,

Mulberry Tree Press, January 2017




The Illusion of Disillusion, 2013


Engraved swordfish bill

8,5 x 11 x 91 cm


João Biscainho © 2020