Graduation Show, Master of Fine Arts, AKV|StJoost
OPENING: SATURDAY 22 JUNE 16.00
OPENING PERFORMANCE BY SU ZAN
ERIK BOKER (US), DAAN GIELIS (BE), ELENI-MYRSINI GOGOU (GR),
SOOHIE KIM (KR), GIORGOS KONTIS (GR), GIJS VAN LITH (NL),
TRAMAINE dE SENNA (US), UNA BJÖRK SIGURÐARDÓTTIR (IS),
DEREK VAN DER VINNE (CA)
Performance by Una Björk Sigurðardóttir on Saturday, the 29th of June, 19.00
CRUQUIUSWEG 79, AMSTERDAM
EXHIBITION DATES: 27 June – 7 July / GALLERY HOURS: Thursday through Sunday 12 – 18.00
The Static alludes to the net charge of an object, an interference, a random signal, a constant, but simultaneously a thing at rest. Yet, the charge, the objects, the associations, the visceral impact, like art itself, is alive … Electric. As in Mark Romanek’s cult film of the same name, there can be a puzzling power in that interference, possibly something that reaches to something even higher.
The graduation group show brings together the work of nine artists from The Netherlands, Greece, United States, Belgium, Canada, South Korea, and Iceland. Visitors will encounter recent works of sculpture, video, painting, installation, and performance, in conversation with one another, and shifting at the mark of the second week. Like perhaps a slightly bizarre evening gala, one might overhear topics approaching Post-Fordism, techno-Modernism, the nature of the Museum, Hitchcock, authenticity and Cy Twombly, and leopard-skin pants. If lucky, Bob Ross might even stop by.
ERIK BOKER (US): My practice often involves working within and amongst the entanglements of language and image and anthropological systemology — in a way of liminally negotiating the gaps and cracks in the systems that connect the self to art, to the world, to the “Other.” In a sometimes tangled knot of referential connections, the basis of the generation of an image can rest on absurd frameworks – building cracked systems of excavating language – an archaeology of words dug up as physicalized things. An underlying concept of translation is at work, not necessarily literally, but as it relates to creation of and movement across form, idea, media, and structure.
DAAN GIELIS (BE): In my work I strive to attain the obscure nature of atmosphere. However consistent my work might be in the use of explicit materials and in playing off this materiality, something stays ungraspable. It seems that my work is still searching for an attitude, it has to come clean with its own tension.
ELENI-MYRSINI GOGOU (GR): Transparency, strictness, integration, motion, illusion form some question marks in my art research. I deliberately create my personal rules and restrictions during my working process, which may concern the materials, the gestures, the adding or reducing and they eventually guide my art decisions.
I am interested in finding the materials’ “breaking points”, potential, materiality and the ways to control or follow their reactions. I am attracted by the trivial and “light” materials, commonly used in our everyday lives but without gaining our attention, such as paper, fabric, salt, balloons, and ice.
I enjoy making temporary installations, each one for a specific place and with the use of a specific material, which will be gradually self-destroyed or damaged according to the material’s durability.
SOOHIE KIM (KR): I am interested in space, particularly “the gray area” – the ambiguity within space. I am comfortable with the idea of change, of impermanence, to escape and go beyond set boundaries. I like the play of our contemporary and temporary lives – where we are nomads.
Dismantlement of space occurs from a process of altering sequences or a unification of opposite elements of phenomena. My paintings construct layers and viewpoints on canvas, visually communicating paradoxical situations by dismantling space, deconstructing and reassembling opposing elements.
GIORGOS KONTIS (GR): Metamorphosis, Transformation, Transition.
The sense of what is left unsaid is what fascinates me in abstract painting. What has not directly been said – but rather implied – and the use of painting in order not to describe, but rather, to interpret. My work is focused on painting, as itself a process, and on where abstract painting stands today. Through the process and the making of a form of painting, which presupposes the painter as the key figure, I am concerned with the notions of authenticity and authorship in it, as also with how the painted image becomes an Icon. A concern that comes into my practice is both the process of painting as well as the display of it.
GIJS VAN LITH (NL): In my work I focus on the fundaments of painting: oil, enamel, acrylic and spray-paint on canvas, linen, wood, and sometimes aluminum. My work results from a rough, intensive and energetic manner of working; the paintings are mainly build-up by big and singular gestures. In this process where painting, removing and re-painting the surface over and over, I am searching for the space that exists between the origin and the completion of the work. I am fascinated in this process because this is where the mental and physical aspects – that come into play while painting – intertwine and melt together.
In my work I explore the notion of uselessness in the repetition and in revisiting painterly gestures and actions, which is similar to Albert Camus’s essay “The myth of Sisyphus”. This is my alibi to paint. This process and action, where I repeatedly apply and remove layers, lies the core of my work. It is not about the reason why I make work, but more so about “how”.
TRAMAINE dE SENNA (US): The process, the manifestation of coming into existence – matter, form, and appearance – from the origin, the latent, and intangible; making visible what is usually invisible or unseen; and that which lies outside the realm of the language game – yet what is invoked – drives my artwork.
It is within the attitude and humor – a reflection of one’s inner world – the absurd and peculiar of others and myself which I observe, question and admire.
Through observation I focus on and quote aspects of society and culture using figuration on an abstract level with differing techniques as a means to support the subject; from idea to realization.
Technique is my attitude – a form of respect. It is a game of polarities between the seduction of tenderness in handiwork and the aesthetics forming their autonomy: a white noise.
UNA BJÖRK SIGURÐARDÓTTIR (IS): There are underlying narratives in my works and it is liberally spiked with humor. I seek to respond and process my personal vision, ranging from the public to the personal, looking at societies and identities in the context of realities that modern man is faced with. I use motifs and imagery found within consumerism and popular culture, in a mixture with my personal visual language and symbolic system. My body of work is marked by multiplicity and the desire to experiment with materials, medium and method. Collaborations with other visual artist, poets and musicians is a recurring thread throughout. I have chosen not to limit myself to a specific medium; although, I have increasingly given emphasis to performances, sound, text, and drawing.
DEREK VAN DER VINNE (CA): Physical tension and gravity are underlying aspects in many of my works. There is a play between incidental happenstance and intentional intervention. In recent years this has culminated in developing certain systems of creation in order to play within those self-appointed bounds, namely an underlying solid structure and a superficial “fluid” fabric covering. These two counterparts can and do have many meanings, one of which delves into a search between the inherent need of our bodies for something physical, and the desire for the transfer of fluid ideas as exemplified in our developing use of information online. Although “online” is not a word that springs to mind when viewing these works, it has acted as an integral inspiration and trigger point for them. In a visual dominated sense I am looking for something laying on our periphery, online and offline.