Love letters to artists,
In experiencing art you share an encounter with an artist, in this moment of anonymous intimacy two minds come into contact with each other and a conversation is struck up. Sometimes the voice of the viewer echoes that of the artist, other times it is able to add to, or even contradict them. To explore an exhibition is to explore a series of moments in which these intimate discussions take place. Unique to each viewer, and impossible to replicate or describe completely.
The pages that follow are a catalogue of these moments.
They are the conversations I had in discovering these artists’ works.
They are purposefully dramatic.
Over an espresso in the rain you told me your work is inseparable from your emotional state, in each coil lay twisted the mindset in which it was made. In this way each item is a record of its creation, a fable written in sensations rather than words.
Your sculptures are then like lost relics of a fantastical land, masks which do not just adorn the face, but rather act as lenses to see through.Whether its Hermes, Monoceros or the Franciscan Eye, each works as an oculus into a world of your own design. Through the eyes of your creatures perception becomes blurred and turns towards the chimerical.
It seems like a very long time since I made my way to the home and studio of the mysterious Evgenia and Victor for a secret arts supper club. Since then, firstly working with you, then as a friend, I have learnt so much from your ability to develop and adapt, to explore new media, whilst still remaining true to your voice.
The clarity in your aesthetic is beautifully balanced with thecomplexity of your artworks. Through image, performance and sound you create immersive contemplative experiences. Your works demands to be thought about, to be performed.
From the moment we met there was a dynamism in your approach that was thrilling. At every moment preempting the next challenge andthrough it pursuing a creative outcome. You have a way of seeing things as they are, of taking a situation apart in order to understand it fully, and in doing so, express it.
This anatomical approach is also obvious in your work - where bodies are deconstructed into their geometric components, contorted and staged into curious mise-en-scène. Your settings mimic, counterpose and reference your subjects so that they become more than sitters in a portrait, they are essential to the works essence.
It’s funny to think how many times we almost met. How may times, we must have been in the same place at the same time never meeting but for ahair’s breadth.
This resonates with me when I look at Do Not Disturb. In these I feel a history of contact - where and when the chemicals and metals did and did not meet, the length of exposure, the intensity of the alchemy… The layers of textures and colours burned onto the plates act as a record of the acid’s touch. The work is in itself a revelation of these touches, it is simultaneously itself and its history, a final moment of contact, and the history of every meeting or near miss that has lead up to it.
Both By Other Means and my life would be infinitely impoverished if without you in them. You have been been a part of By Other Means since the very beginning, cleaning, hanging work, leading workshops, proof reading everything (except this!) and helping me through some of the toughest moments of the past year.
As with Liturgie, I cannot wait to be a part of Autumn Waters. You are curating an amazing group of creative collaborators, with as many talents as yourself. Autumn Waters will become an astounding work of total art, using dance, technology, text, art and music in ways that would make Diaghilev blush.
More love than I could possibly type,
Your prints make me happy, they just do. The style, the colours, the designs, the captions, and most of all the dark humour that underlies every one. Your designs delight in disaster. Pointing towards repetition, conventionality andsymmetry they identify disfunction.
Hidden in every day objects, your shapes and patterns tell delightful tales of misfortune. Through structural breaks and strategic errors the expected sequence of things is broken. The narrative is touched by a playfulness but retains a complexity that transcends traditional media. They are a sweet pill to anyone who speak of the ‘high arts’ through pursed lips. A remedial vision to pretentious eyes.
Fabulated landscapes take form in stroke and tincture, then ghostly forms emerge. They become solid as they are seen, but remain unyielding. At the moment in which they come into sight they retreat once more. It’s this fluidity which fascinated me, this creative impetus to evoke a space which conjures a fantastical habitat, and then asks of the viewer to populate it.
In your work a double creation occurs, the first being of your own design, the second being that which you bring out in the viewer as your worlds are animated in their minds.
Andreas & Arthur,
You catalogue the lives of those who live in loud basements and busy streets, some famous some unknown, but through your work you make royalty of them all. Set in two worlds - the contemporary, and the timeless- one is always left waiting for the twist, the moment when these two collide. There is a playfulness in this which sparks a curiosity in the viewer, always trying to pre-empt the joke, the reference that lies beneath.
Your work makes me want to know more, to uncover the lives of your subjects, to unravel the story that reaches its climax through your words and in your lens.