31.10.2017
You Are Safe - A Non-Linear Perspective

You Are Safe - A Non-Linear Perspective’ has been installed in Open Society Foundations offices in correspondence with the earlier installed ‘The Furthest Mirrors’ and ‘The Furthest Reflections’ series.

Whereas ‘The Furthest Mirrors’ and ‘The Furthest Reflections’ series were focusing on the notion of giving, this one focuses on the notion of taking. Brought together they question the harmony, investigate and weigh the equality of these two notions that manifest within one’s actions on a personal and social level. They are examining greed, the condition which arises when the two notions are out of balance. This is a mental condition created by fear of not being enough, not having enough, not being safe; a loss of trust caused by some sort of past trauma. A person living with this fear needs to integrate the feeling of safety to be able to cure greed.

The line that dissects the surface of the painting follows the map of Pangea to reveal the warm reflection of the copper base that shines like a treasure beneath. The shape of it is similar to an embryo pulsating through the seven panels like a non-linear period of development, getting ready to be born or reborn spontaneously.

Pangea, the single continent can symbolise the analogous unity of all humanity and, by extension, the unified individual. This symbol can inspire the desire to create a unified, global civilisation where each of its members feels connected to all others. Similarly, to mirror that unified quality in the individuals themselves.

The four elements of nature are brought together. The crusted texture of the paint evokes earth. The engraved line is like a river cutting its way through the land, evoking water. The copper below evokes fire. The blue edges that envelope the images evoke air.

Pieces of a broken clock are scattered throughout the landscape; there is only the present moment. It seems to be the right time to recreate the utopian paradigm of Pangea where conflicts need not be resolved because they have not been created. Perhaps this is the right time to realise Earth is a limited resource, but there is plenty for everyone. It is a closed system, one within which an individual’s actions have a ripple effect on the whole of humanity. It is also the right time to realise the Universe is an unlimited resource, but there will never be enough for greed.

CINEMATIC VR INSTALLATION AT PECKHAM FESTIVAL

Cinematic VR Installation ‘TWO: SEPARATION’ will be shown at SECOND DRAFT, a Peckham Festival Fringe Art event.

Location: Safehouse 2, 137 Copeland Road, London SE15 3SN. 15-17 September 2017.

‘Two Separation’ is a 4 minutes site specific VR film and installation that explores the phenomena of lucid dreaming, the concept of personal space and the concern of existence outside one’s cognitive beliefs.

Ticket holders only. Please book your 10 minutes time slot and arrive in time, otherwise you may have to wait until the next empty slot.

OPEN SOCIETY FOUNDATIONS COMMISSION

‘The Furthest Mirrors’ and ‘The Furthest Reflections’ series has been installed in Open Society Foundations offices.

‘The Furthest Mirrors’ and ‘The Furthest Reflections’ series has been installed in Open Society Foundations offices.

'The Furthest Mirrors; I Am’, 'The Furthest Mirrors; Vulnerability’, 'The Furthest Reflections; Peace’ and 'The Furthest Reflections; Strength’ are four paintings that were created to examine a metaphysical concept which can be best illustrated by the infinity mirror; two mirrors turned toward each other creating endless reflections within each other, cast ever further from the centre. If someone stood between these mirrors, their image would be reflected further and further from the person themselves, on into infinity.

The essence of this concept is the idea that each person’s life experience follows the structure of such mirrors: the individual, in the centre, sees their reflection scatter in all the mirrors, like white light projected through infinite prisms. The closest mirrors represent the closest relationships, like family and friends, further ones represent wider communities one belongs to, even further ones represent the largest communities like nations or religions and onward toward totalities like humanity and the cosmos.

An entailment of the infinity mirror, is that conflicts found in the larger communities reflect conflicts within those individuals who are affected by them. An individual at the centre of the infinity mirrors cannot, by direct intervention, change their own reflection in a more distant mirror. That reflection will automatically change only when the person resolves his or her own tendencies and internal conflicts which, in the social context, became amplified - for instance, into Law and into War. The paintings, themselves, are the results of the artist acting out this internal quest.

The lines that connect the series of paintings are fractions of maps, maps of locations that are considered ‘problematic hotspots’, areas that require intervention, protection, communication and many forms of political, economic and humanitarian investment. These are areas where the Open Society Foundations focuses its attention. The paintings take particular areas which exhibit complementary problems such as aggression and victimhood in their direct political and indirect economical and cultural manifestations. Each of the maps is represented by a specific colour. The colours connote healthy behavioural patterns these locations are struggling to integrate based on colour psychology, colour symbolism and the colours of the seven chakras in the human body.

To understand the dynamics of the political forces in these areas, the same forces and patterns have been examined on a personal level. According to the logic of the infinity mirror concept, the personal is the only level from which an individual can gather direct information, learn and act, hence being the only level where changes can be carried out. This reflects a belief that every political structure and tendency one experiences already exists within the individual's psyche and can be only understood and changed by turning inward and finding those patterns. It is a view that creates personal responsibility for social problems, at the same time providing an opportunity to act; to act in ones daily direct encounters. Without this view, attempting to act as a single human being facing a social-scale problem often leads to paralysis or despair.

This personalisation of communities/nations/cultures also allows examining social tendencies with the tools of psychology, proposing the possibility of finding solutions with the knowledge of modern psychotherapy.

Through this process of personalisation we can explore the larger social level - communities / nations / cultures - using the insights of psychology and seeking solutions through the tools of modern psychotherapy. For instance, we might explore how the aggression of nations and factions is mirrored in our interactions with the people we come across in our daily life. Can we expect peace at the scale of a society if we are not acting respectfully on a daily basis with the ones that are closest to us? Similarly, we might see our willingness to tolerate, on a social scale, manipulation and aggression on the part of a government or commercial interests, and yet expect others to respect our personal boundaries.

When asked, “What can we do about the crazy havoc in which we live?” the Dalai Lama said, “Attend to the crazy havoc inside yourself first.” Maybe it is the right time to realise that changes can be initiated inside our own consciousness; they can then be pursued in the outer world.

The infinity mirror concept becomes concrete in the series of paintings: Whilst interacting with the fractures and imperfections of the surface of the painting, sometimes following them sometimes forcing through them, a rhythm of surrender and control is created. The motions of engraving the lines represent the response of the human mind to its surroundings. A process of moment-to-moment relating where every millimetre expands consciousness. It resembles a shamanic ceremony, an open state of mind where every action and every coincidence is considered symbolic. It is a quest to find remedies for those fractures and injuries that exist on all levels of human experience and, in a similarly symbolic manner, to perform corrections. It is a process of discovering those patterns which run across the layers of reflection, as they show up in the process of creation, enabling curative corrections and adjustments that treat the artwork as a voodoo doll.

'The Furthest Mirrors; I Am’:

“My hand is trembling as I proceed inch by inch, slowly, drawing the line on the rough surface. It needs to be imprinted deep into the material, like a riverbed. I bump into an edge with the blunt pencil that transfers the path of the Hungarian border onto the orange painted landscape. I force it to cut through the lump like the border river once did through the rocks. The rougher the surface, the slower and more painful it is to proceed. I am longing for rest, but I want to see it accomplished in its sharp, deep beauty. I want to see its birth. I shake myself and continue. When it is done, I cannot stop wondering at its depth and clarity.”

The dominantly orange colour of this painting represents ‘self-definition’. This is exactly what is needed in a case of borderline personality disorder, a condition that develops when one's own needs and boundaries are not respected during the early period of development, whether this is caused by neglect or abuse. This parallels the situation of a country whose borders have been demarcated by others, or that has repeatedly been invaded throughout its history. An example of this borderline personality disorder, at the national level, is Hungary as illustrated by its reactions to the recent Syrian refugee crisis.

'The Furthest Mirrors; Vulnerability’:

“This time the pencil is traveling through turquoise waters following the shores of England. The waves create an unpredictable rhythm. It is all so easy; suddenly I bump into an edge that knocks me off my path. I could not see the next wave under the paper. I need to go back and try to ride it again, this time slower and more consciously. Yet it happens once more. I promise myself I will keep it slow even when it is calm. Mistakes are corrected, and the waves get smoother.”

The turquoise colour of this painting symbolises vulnerability, open communication between the heart and the spoken word, that Britain needs to integrate, overcoming the fear that its problems cannot be resolved without aggression or separation. For a healthy being, vulnerability is safe; it means a peaceful way of sharing ones needs, thoughts and feelings without the fear that they won’t be heard. When the cause of borderline personality disorder is neglect/isolation, it manifests in aggressive/invasive behaviour, and the Freudian repetition compulsion, gravitating toward further isolation. This personality cannot integrate the trust that its needs will be met, that it can achieve safety without taking from others in an invasive way. It cannot express its needs peacefully or respectfully because this openness of communication, this vulnerability, does not feel safe for the person. This syndrome manifested on a larger scale during Brexit in Britain and in the recent elections in the United States.

'The Furthest Reflections; Peace’:

“Green is like a highway that has no history. I feel it rejects the past. Thin ground, all flat and even. The pencil goes on with rocket speed, driven by the energy accumulated from the previous struggles. I feel like a superhero until realising I am following a totally wrong direction. Due to the pace, I end up miles away from where I wanted to be. Another attempt and another wrong path. This goes on until the initial energies settle into a peaceful flow. I pause and take a deep breath. Reality check. Where is the real path? Now I focus and slow down, regaining control, finally finding my way along the streets of Kiev.”

When a psyche is repeatedly exposed to aggression it can respond in two ways: taking on the tendencies of rebellion or conformity. This aggression can be direct or indirect. Indirect aggression manifests as manipulation. The conformist can be manipulated by an authority figure, as can a rebel who automatically reacts against what they are told to do. Repressed pain, if allowed to accumulate, might burst out in rage toward a perceived aggressor. By definition, manipulation is ‘controlling something or someone to one's own advantage’. This can take various forms: the distortion of facts, creating ambivalence through the use of terms which switch their meaning, unwarranted assumptions of causality, etc, the whole panoply of rhetoric, all of which, at a social level, is amplified through the media.

Green is the symbol of self-compassion, a perspective that can prevent suppressed pain from turning into destructive anger. Self-compassion is a quality the rebel needs, in order to maintain their focus on their own interests, interests which differ from those of their opponents. In this painting, the dominant colour, green, has been paired with the map of Independence Square and its surroundings in Kiev.

'The Furthest Reflections; Strength’:

“Yellow is the most alien. I start slow but why? It is all too easy to settle into an even pace, no pain, no hindrances, no highs and lows, an uninterrupted and steady voyage until my mind completely switches off. Only at the end do I realise I missed a turn, left out a part that can never be retrieved. It was a sneaky lullaby that carried me away, took me on a journey to Mexico, traveling atop the train, La Bestia. In the meantime, it has stolen a part of my path. Now I know. I am awake.”

The basic colour of the fourth painting is yellow. Yellow is the symbol of self-esteem that conveys the message: ‘I am enough’ or ‘I have enough’. It is a perspective that can prevent suppressed pain from turning inward against the self. Self-esteem is a quality that the conformist needs, in order to maintain their social and political autonomy against the threats of cultural and economic invasion, that is to say, consumerism. This manipulation leads to economic and financial imbalances where conformists adjust their behaviour, on a personal level, and their economy and culture, on a national level, to the interests of the aggressors.

The line on this painting follows the railway of the ‘Death Train’, La Bestia, on the top of which citizens of South American countries are migrating to North America, despite a high risk they will become victims of human trafficking and abuse.

GEBILDE PAINTERS

Gebilde Painters is curated in response to a Panel Discussion, 'The Trouble with Painting', which took place at the ICA on the 18 November 2010 with Margarita Gluzberg, Vanessa Jackson, Mark Leckey and Bruce Maclean

3 - 5 March 2017, 10 - 7pm
PV: 2 March 2017, 6 - 9pm
5th Base Gallery
23 Heneage Street, London E1 5LG

The exhibition is part of ‘First Thursdays’ organised by Whitechapel Gallery.

LET THE DUST SETTLE

'Let the Dust Settle' is an exhibition of contemporary artworks that focuses on the participating artist's unique approaches to the exhibition space, exploring metaphorical and physical ideas of Dust.

The Gallery is the Crypt of St Pancras Parish Church that was designed and used for coffin burials from 1822, when the Church was opened, to 1854, and the crypts of all London churches were closed to burials. In both World Wars, the Crypt was also used as an air raid shelter.

This exhibition explores the walls of this history and on the days when other cultures celebrate ‘Dia de Muertos – Day of the Dead and western Christian traditions celebrate ‘All Saints Day’. The idea that a calendar can be marked by birth and death and ideas can illuminate memories and tradition is expanded as the individual artist tackles the confined concepts and ideas around Dust. A Being of mysterious matter lingering around us, stirred by our every gesture, that we consume with every breath and emit with every action. As the well-known Buddhist saying goes: ‘Since dust, there is no void’.

The exhibition consists of artworks utilising a variety of mediums, projection, interactive virtual reality installation, sculptural installation, expanded painting practices, music and performance.

2nd - 6th November: 12:00 - 18:00
5th November PV: 18:00 -21:00
Crypt Gallery
Euston Road, London NW1 2BA

Participatory practices and Artist Conversations are aimed at including audiences of all ages.

Participating artists: Amber Booth, Henry Burns, Louise Camrass, Ivy Chan, Sun Chang, Flora Duley, Rachel Egan, Andrew Hart, Bin Bin Hong, Ekaterina Luzgina, Mike McShane, Nikoleta Martjanova, Lydia Moss, Janek Nixon, Elizabeth Prentis, Reka Ritt, Siannon Saunders, Jane Yang, Leda Yang

Further Enquiries: www.Let-the-Dust-Settle.co.uk
Flora Duley – flora@floraduley.com
Reka Ritt – contact@rekaritt.com

DRAFT

A group Exhibition of Artists expanding the meaning of 'Draft'. Works include improvised Musician and Sound Performances, Artist Talks and Events, Expanded Painting and Sculpture installations, Film. Draft Ale will be available throughout the exhibition.

8th - 11th September 2016
Safehouse 2
137 Copeland Road, London SE15 3SN

Thursday 8th September: 6pm - 9pm
Friday 9th September: 11am - 9pm
Saturday 10th September: 11am - 9pm PV 6pm - 9pm
Sunday 11th September: 11am - 5pm

Artists: sun chang, callam cocker, flora duley, rachel egan, jordan hamblin, connie harrison, andrew hart, serena huang, nikoleta martjanova, janek nixon, alice parker, john petulla, elizabeth prentis, reka ritt, beth roberts, francis voss, polly welsby.

website: gebilde-art.site/previous-shows
Instagram: instagram.com/draftsafehouse
Facebook:facebook.com/events/411147909055603/

ART GEMINI PRIZE 2016

Delighted to be back this year to Art Gemini Prize with the painting "It Is All Calm Now" and thank you to the judging panel selecting from an amazing 941 entries from 34 countries. The selection committee includes Pamela Kember, Sajid Rizvi, Estelle Lovatt, Isabel H Langtry and Thorsten Overgaard.

The finalists’ exhibition will be on 22-30 September 2016 at Asia House Gallery, 63 New Cavendish Street, London W1G 7LP.

CHELSEA UNDERGRADUATE SHOW

Sat 18-Sun 19 June, 11am-5pm
Mon 20-Fri 24 June, 10am-8pm
Sat 25 June, 11am-5pm

Chelsea College of Arts
16 John Islip Street SW1P 4JU

'THREE' INSTALLATION

My work 'Three', an installation of physical and virtual reality, will be shown as part of the Chelsea Undergraduate Summer Show between the 17th and 25th of June 2016. All welcome to be part of the experience.

BARE HOME
21-27 March 2016

BARE HOME is an exhibition featuring a home.
This home is located on 4 floors and 3 landings, connected by a light-well.
Its structure uncannily mirrors both the structure of the human body and the mind of its inhabitant.
It incorporates objects, useful and useless, precious and junk, artworks and everyday items and everything in-between.
Some spaces might appear to be familiar and cosy while others seem alien and uncomfortable.
While walking from the well-known to the disturbing and back again, there is a lot of work to be done by the visitor: observe, touch, listen, smell, feel and understand.
You might be BARE you might be HOME.