Wisrah Villefort’s overarching research focuses on the nonhuman, digital matter, synthetic polymers, prosthetics and their markets.
The ongoing hypermedia work Mercado Livre begun in 2017, is dependent on the viewer performing online, accessing the platform via Instagram. Villefort collects images from online marketplaces based in the Global South, outside of the West, including AliExpress (China) and Mercado Livre (Argentina) for the content. Mercado Livre, besides being the title of the work and the platform, is also the term for the neoliberal principle of the “free market”, in which goods’ prices supposedly regulate themselves.
This book accompanies his exhibition, THE MOUTH OF THE GIFTED HORSE, dissecting Mercado Livre through the eyes of the show, focussing on inter-species relationships and non-human prosthetics, featuring a text written by Villefort during his recent research residency at Pivô, São Paulo, entitled 'Notes on Masks, Gloves and Muzzles: Beyond the Fault of Epimetheus'.