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Anniversary Edition

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'KA -BOOM!' (2016) sculpture installation by Lang Ea (photo courtesy of Gary.P.Hayes)


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Eri Kassnel

Hadas Hayun

Jill Poczkai Ibsen

Marta Wapiennik

Lang Ea

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As humans we recognize ourselves by remembering. This is the evidence of existing in a chronological context, which forms identity. The loss of memory can lead to a serious identity crises. But memory hasn’t to be true implicitly as scientific research learned us: to remember is a flexible process, which always adapts to an optimized learning for the future. My work ranges in transition of photography and video, of visual and sonic relevance. Especially the interface between the disciplines I am interested of: photography as a timebased medium - video as a static image - sound as a catalyzer of visual imagination.

I believe in art and i believe in design, and one of my goals is to break the barrier between them and to create something complete and full of beauty, that may be used as a picture on a gallery wall or a printed dress. The image in both cases will be the same. My activity is based on observation of the nature. The natural elements around me, such as flowers in vases and trees at my window are inspiring and interesting me. Through my work also explore the images of nature that already exist -such as botanical illustrations from old encyclopedias and nature books. I try to respond to it and to find an original, yet somehow classic ways to, express my way of seeing. Im very interested in flemish art, still life painting and science illustrations.

Nowadays I am creating works guided mostly by intuition and emotions. I am trying really hard to give the most from me during the process of creation which has become more important for me than it was few years ago. I think this is the best way to deliver powerful and strong images that can move the viewer.

My works are a compilation of emotional narratives, fuelled by personal experience of the Cambodian Khmer Rouge regime, interwoven with the lingering resonances of historical trauma, where the burden of history and memory combine to enhance my vision. My dramatic, illustrative, thoughtful images and references evolve from my personal narrative, collective memory, literature, and mass media to expose what is lingering in my subconscious associated with a childhood amid war. I create imageries which causes viewers to engage, not always comfortably, although providing insight into my concepts and vision, while stimulating the social conscience.

Fiona Weir (GB) is a visual artist who lives and works in Rotterdam. At the age of fourteen she started photographing places, objects and people. Photography and film has become a means for her to explore the aesthetics of normality and reality. Today, her playground covers a sympathy for indefinite places. She literally stumbles upon them, almost unaware of the place itself when she takes the picture. Only later, she inquires what is behind or beyond of what is depicted in the image. The locations photographed are reloaded and ready for a new reality to occur. In determining what will be seen, she controls the experience of place.

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The work of Jill Poczkai Ibsen combines painting, installation and photo. In her work she strives consistently an expression that leaves no doubt about her devotion of the graphic universe. The expression is abstract and devoids superfluous details and visual cliches. An artifice that emphasizes the dialogue between artistic practices and a quiet presence between artwork and viewer. The story behind her use of images is to be found in her upbringing at the west coast of Denmark. The clouds, the sea and the surrounding countryside were literally her playground through childhood and infancy adulthood.

I find inspiration in colors, textures, surroundings and nature. I treat photographs as sketches for further exploration. Modifying reality in them has become some sort of language which suits the best to my feelings and a way of perceiving the world.

Fiona Weir


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Eri Kassnel lives and works in Germany

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lives and works in Auckland, New Zealand

Ana Santos

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lives and works in Porto, Portugal

Marta Wapiennik

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Fiona Weir Ana Santos

Wasabi Chuang

Peng Yi Hang

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I’m not me anymore, the journey which was proposed to me from the moment I was introduced to the world as Ana, random name that was chosen by someone random and so far unknown, stayed with me. My debut in the world in 1992, was marked by ignorance, except of course, for whom carried me for nine months. Since that moment, I saw, heard, read and lived parallel realities, however, complementary to mine. To make a statement as Myself, being someone as a person, being talkative, I am faced constantly under the watchful eyes of others, an apparent view in relation to myself.

I think many of artists are not good at talking. Therefore, they try to express themselves through art. Using their art work to tell a story, to describe a feeling and sometimes this way can reach the exquisite level which is hard to be achieved a words. Expressing motion by art can get more close to the truth and emotion. I am that kind of person who is not good at reading and writing. I always meet the situation of hard to share my feeling with other people. But now, I can express all my feelings through painting comfortably and by photography, I can catch those touching details which might not describe easily by words.

Creations that exist to beautify landscapes invade our lives, in the states of the present and absent, the natural and the unnatural, to construct a wondrous city atmosphere. People are now used to the illusion of the fake in the place of the real. Decision-makers and enforcers consciously create fantastical products that have only decorative-worth but lack functionality, under the so-called name of “art”. These products are seemingly just in existence to please the people or people in power, forming a societal landscape that is unique to the city, while making visual the city’s modernisation

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lives and works in The Netherlands

Wasabi Chuang

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lives and works in London, United Kingdom

Hadas Hayun

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lives and works in Tel Aviv, Israel

Peng Yi Hang

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lives and works in Taipei On the cover KA BOOOM, 2016, Installation by Lang Ea

Special thanks to Haylee Lenkey, Martin Gantman , Krzysztof Kaczmar, Joshua White, Nicolas Vionnet, Genevieve Favre Petroff, Sandra Hunter, MyLoan Dinh, John Moran, Marya Vyrra, Gemma Pepper, Michael Nelson, Hannah Hiaseen, Scarlett Bowman, Yelena York Tonoyan, Haylee Lenkey, Martin Gantman , Krzysztof Kaczmar and Robyn Ellenbogen.

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J ill Poczkai Ibsen Lives and works in Copenhagen, Denmark

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he work of Jill Poczkai Ibsen combines painting, installation and photo. In her work she strives consistently an expression that leaves no doubt about her devotion of the graphic universe. The expression is abstract and devoids superfluous details and visual cliches. An artifice that emphasizes the dialogue between artistic practices and a quiet presence between artwork and viewer. The story behind her use of images is to be found in her upbringing at the west coast of Denmark. The clouds, the sea and the surrounding countryside were literally her playground through childhood and infancy adulthood. A playground that

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has become a steadfast constituent in her work - as visual fragments or physical based modified abstractions over same theme. The images are based on an artistic intention that none emotional and graphic compositions are being complimented by value-adding components. Jill's works often arise questions about modern life staging, decay and aesthetics - the relationship between these and reality as we experience it. They beautify and exhibit less flattering aspects of life, in a way that evokes calm while it also speaks to the immediate aesthetic pleasure and sensuality.


Scenery of a human mind


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Jill Poczkai Ibsen An interview by Josh Ryder, curator and Melissa C. Hilborn, curator articulaction@post.com

Rnging from painting and photography to installation, multidisciplinary artist Jill Poczkai Ibsen draws the viewers through an unconventional exploration of natural beauty to emphasizes the dialogue between artistic practices and a quiet presence between artwork and the spectatorship. In Scenery of a human mind that we'll be discussing in the following pages she accomplishes the difficult task of expressing the contrast between the natural and the artificial, showing autonomous aesthetics in the way she combines her materials. One of the most impressive aspects of Poczkai Ibsen 's work is the way she extracts a compelling narrative from Nature, urging the viewers to evolve to conscious participants: we are very pleased to introduce our readers to her stimulating and multifaceted artistic production. Hello Jill and welcome to ARTiculAction: we would start this interview with a couple of questions about rich and multifaceted background. You have a solid training and you having studied as a print designer, you nurtured your education with a Bachelor in Fashion Design, that you received from The Royal Danish School of Fine Arts.. How do these experiences influence the way you conceive and produce your works? And in

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particular, how does your cultural substratum inform the way you relate yourself to art making and to the aesthetic problem in general?

During my time as a designer – both in design school and in the years of self employment I learned to work by methods. Methods that kept my process both analytically and creative – in a clear and almost straight forward line. This way of working rewarded me with time and fewer impasses. As I began working with art I immediately grabbed to this “tool”, and it has been a great help in the process of defining Jill Poczkai Ibsen as an artist and my artistic DNA so to speak. So I guess Im very influenced by my background as a designer. I choose to label it as a signature of my works. As to the way I relate myself to my art – as already mentioned I started out with a very design theoretically approach. Asking myself the same questions I used to work with when developing fashion collections – questions that would ensure I didn¥t missed out at key areas. It could not have been in any other way J. But over time, growing as an artist, these anchorpoints have been redefined to fit my artistic process. About the aesthetic problem or issue I have always been drawn to it – it is like a balloon I can¥t get hold off. For a moment you have it and then it is gone


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again…the same goes with the concept aesthetic. Meaning that the concept can be defined in so many ways that it easy to get lost in translation of it. Looking at my work as a designer and now as an artist I find resemble use of the term – the most common term: To please the eye! But also and maybe even more important is the sustainable or long lasting thought which also can found in the term – a thought that in some way contribute to a worlds of lesser “need to haves”…For me personal this mindset is important, and I really try to bring into my art as well. You are a versatile artist and your practice combines photography, painting and installation and photoYour approach coherently encapsulates several viewpoints and reveals an incessant search of an organic investiagtion about the notion of duality that affects our unstable contemporary age, and the results convey together a coherent and consistent sense of harmony and unity. Before starting to elaborate about your production, we would suggest to our readers to visit http://www.jillpoczkaiibsen.com in order to get a synoptic view of your work: while walking our readers through your process, we would like to ask you if you have you ever happened to realize that a symbiosis between different techniques is the only way to express and convey the ideas you explore.

This is a quite difficult question as the answer in one way or another seems to limit me. Regardless the answer it will force me into a corner where I let go of unconscious beliefs about how to work

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Jill Poczkai Ibsen


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as an artist. Why? Because the versatility that defines my artworks using different techniques came by freedom and a naÔve curiosity to do so. Trying to set rules for how I best express and convey my ideas will be to remove an artistic option on my working palette…no need for that J. But in a future perspective I believe the use of techniques will be narrowed down to contain only the techniques I find interesting and which in best ways intermediary my stories – that can be one, that can be three. For the time being installation and photography has my overall focus. So as an answer to your question I guess the freedom of working with different kind of techniques suits me best. For this special edition of ARTiculAction we have selected Scenery of a human mind an extremely interesting body of works that our readers have already started to get to know in the introductory pages of this article. What has at once captured our attention of your work is its dynamic and autonomous aesthetics: in particular, it seems to communicate a successful attempt to transform tension to harmony, and it's really captivating. While walking our readers through the usual genesis of Scenery of a human mind, would you shed light on your usual process and sources of inspiration?

As a child of the rough and untamed nature along the western sea coastline of Denmark – I see myself looking back at the beginning of every new project. It becomes a natural first choise to build on or to extract ideas from. Sometimes

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the nature plays a visual part in my artworks, sometimes it transforms into emotions and past glimpses that need to be worked into abstracted shapes as Scenery of a Human Mind was. Emotions and glimpses gathered within the memories of my childhood along the sea. Sometimes the framework of nature becomes the narrator of the things we do not like to say out loud emotions that make us uneasy. A long my fascination of nature comes a great interest in the human mankind and society – how do we interact opposite eachother, nature, society and the uncertainty of the future. The essence of my interest and sources of inspirations often arises themes as nature vs. manmade, human emotions, modern life staging and an overall premise that my works brings some kind of calmness to its surroundings. So one can say that my usual process always in some way starts with a look back. Eventually I might find this place emptied…fortunately I see a lot work waiting to be extracted from the themes only. We have been particularly imprssed with the way your hybrid approach accomplishes the difficult task of transferring into a liberated expressive realm the imagery you refer to. When inquiring into how memories transform to suit the perception of oneself, you capture non-sharpness and bring to a new level of significance the elusive still ubiquitous relationship between experience and memory. What is the role of memory in your process?

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In an earlier question I refered to my use of memories in my work with art. To me the exact role of memory in my work is multifaceted. The word has many “faces” and “roles to play”. Sometimes I use it to bring life to artworks that are based on the extrasensory memory, sometimes it gives me a direct path regarding a shape – literally spoken. Sometimes I use it as a mouthpiece to exhibit the non flattering side of human kind. The key role of memory is for me a great box of inspiration. Drawing from universal imagery and re-interpret the traditional ideas of natural beauty, Endless Boundaries combines accessible elements and we have highly appreciated the way it condenses a symbiosis between intuition and freedom of composition. Your approach reveals unconventional features in the way it deconstructs perceptual images in order to assemble them in a collective imagery, urging the viewers to a process of selfreflection. while inviting the viewer to elaborate personal interpretations, you do not reject a gaze on aesthetics: the dream-like quality of suspended time creates a lively combination between conceptual and beauty. How important is the aesthetic problem for you when you conceive a work?

I can keep this one short. Aesthetics, as a concept, as a guideline, as a working tool within composition, expression and as an experience to lean on within my work is absolutely essential in each artwork of mine. Without an aesthetic view of presentation at some level it would not be my work. Aesthetics considerations keep me on track.


Endless Boundaries, Heavy Clouds


Endless Boundaries, Sunset


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Endless Boundaries, Flood

As the late Franz West did in his installations, your work shows unconventional features in the way it deconstructs perceptual processes in order to assemble them in a collective

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imagery, urging the viewers to a process of self-reflection. Artists are always interested in probing to see what is beneath the surface: maybe one of the roles of an artist could be to


Endless Bounderies, Thundersky


Reflection


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reveal unexpected sides of Nature, especially of our inner Nature... what's your view about this?

I certainly agree - for me at least it is right. I believe not every artist would agree. Maybe it has to do with the intensions of your work and the contemporary and more profound relevance you seek within your artworks. These considerations might create the role one act as an artist. But surely, to me it is essential – I believe it enhances the value of the artworks eligibility. And if my works, in any way and through my role as a “revealer”, can lead to a better understanding and acceptance of the challenges we face as society trapped in expectations of the modern world, I fulfilled my role not only as an artist but as a revealer too. To end this question I like to add one last thing – bringing up unexpected sides of nature and inner nature might also be the causes that moves the audience on an aesthetically, emotionally and of cause artistic level. Without these reactions my art might never find foothold and acceptance in the art world. Through these imprints I hope to be long lastingJ In Reflection you seem to address to viewers to extract a narrative behind the images you select, to establish direct relations with the spectatorship: this is a quite recurrent aspect of your works and you encapsulate evokative elements from Traditional imagery, combining them with contemporary sensitiveness. German multidisciplinary artist Thomas Demand once stated that "nowadays art can no longer rely so much on symbolic strategies and has to probe

psychological, narrative elements within the medium instead". How would you describe the function of the evokative places you select from urban landscapes?

Again it somehow comes down to looking back. An ever present emotion of calmness hits me when “going back”. And as it is one of the things I like to bring to the audience, as an immediately reaction, I deliberately choose landscapes that nourish the feeling of calmness – both to the eye and the emotional part of us. Also these frames has to fit the aesthetical point of view – in a quite general term….it must please the eye. The equilibrium concerning the composition of your works gives them a permanence to emphasizes the dialogue between artistic practices and a quiet presence between artwork and viewers, who are drawn through a multilayered experience. So we would take this occasion to ask you if in your opinion personal experience is an absolutely indespensable part of a creative process... Do you think that a creative process could be disconnected from direct experience?

Interesting – you actually catch me at a point where Im not there yet….cant say if I ever will be. But taking a step back to the question about my background in design and if it influences my process in making art – there will be 2 answers. A part of me believe that it can be disconnected from a direct experience – as many processes in the established fashion industry is. But a greater part of me believe that art becomes much more

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Repetition

interesting growing from a personal experience and a process that is under your skin rather than something you do

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with arms length. It is indeed a balance, because art developed with oneself as an all around focuspoint might not be


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interesting to anyone but yourself. But taking a jump from a personal impetus is for me just a way to secure Im on the

right path‌.Taking for instance Reflection, which is as personal as it gets, I kept in focus the expression part

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– which was to be as graphical as could be. Showing only parts of the body made me overcome the “me thing”. Over these years you have exhibited your works in several occasions, including your solo “Caught up in memories” at Galleri Artmarket / Hellerup: one of the hallmarks of your work is the capability to create a direct involvement with the viewers, who are urged to evolve from a condition of mere spectatorship. So before leaving this conversation we would like to pose a question about the nature of the relationship of your art with your audience. Do you consider the issue of audience reception as being a crucial component of your decision-making process, in terms of what type of language is used in a particular context?

Yes and no. In some ways the audience is always presence in my process and decision making. For instance a key question to myself often is to enlighten the levels of interest within the chosen artwork. This immediately draw attention to the public relevance and if anything on a physical, psychological or expression level need to be adjusted. Im not here to gaze inwards - it would be absolutely boring to wider group of audience. But still I must trust myself enough to make interesting art without always leaning on the reaction of the audience – regardless the context. As for the language I use to capture the attention of the viewer it is essential it stays almost “non spoken”…soundless if you like – as I work with giving shape to the unshapeless, I try to speak without

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giving sound to words. I found a language within emotions, memories and how they affect us - through these I make space for the viewer to talk, think, reflect, interpret….in the language they like and find useful. Thanks a lot for your time and for sharing your thoughts, Jill. Finally, would you like to tell us readers something about your future projects? How do you see your work evolving?

For the nearby future it is all about exploring the wonders of latex – fluid and hardened. This material contains so many qualities that I like to make use of and add to my work – especially installationwise. The material has a unique and quick way of transforming its surface under certain conditions regarding the interaction with air, light or heat. The material also characterize itself by being a good symbolic player, the epitome of a graphic expression, and most importantly it has been a crucial player in the process of approaching a artistic DNA that I like to add to a trademark of mine. On the long run my works is set to evolve around refining the artistic expression that hopefully will reward me with invitations to exhibition opportunities outside Denmark and Europe.

An interview by Josh Ryder, curator and Melissa C. Hilborn, curator articulaction@post.com


Reflection


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E ri Kassnel Lives and works in a little village near Augsburg/ Germany

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s humans we recognize ourselves by remembering. This is the evidence of existing in a chronological context, which forms identity. The loss of memory can lead to a serious identity crises. But memory hasn’t to be true implicitly as scientific research learned us: to remember is a flexible process, which always adapts to an optimized learning for the future. People collect proofs like photographs, documents and letters to verify their memories. I follow from this an existential doubt: Can I trust memory? Who

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am I really? If I don't leave any traces, have I ever existed? In this area of conflict I am interested in man’s subjective sensations and his capability to remember, to forget, to associate and to create - consciously or not his own Utopia. My work ranges in transition of photography and video, of visual and sonic relevance. Especially the interface between the disciplines I am interested of: photography as a time- based medium - video as a static image sound as a catalyzer of visual imagination.

Eri Kassnel


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Eri Kassnel An interview by Dario Rutigliano, curator and Barbara Scott, curator articulaction@post.com

Artist Eri Kassnel's work ranges in transition of photography and video, of visual and sonic relevance to accomplish a multilayered investigation about the notion of memory and its relationship with collective imagery and perceptual processes. In Return to paradise that we'll be discussing in the following pages, she inquires into the dislocation between space and time to draw the viewers through an unconventional journey showing autonomous aesthetics and coherent unity. One of the most impressive aspects of Kassnel's work is her successful attempt to trigger the viewers' most limbic parameters to investigate about the act of remembering and its relationship with notion of identity: we are very pleased to introduce our readers to her stimulating and multifaceted artistic production. Hello Eri and welcome to ARTiculAction: we would start this interview with a couple of questions about rich and multifaceted background. You have a solid training and you hold a diploma in conservation and restoration that you received from the University of the Arts in Bern: over these years you also attended a residence in Nyköping and you currently collaborate at the H2-Contemporary Art Centre: how do these experiences influence the way you conceive

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and produce your works? And in particular, how does your cultural substratum inform the way you relate yourself to art making and to the aesthetic problem in general?

My approach to art-making is quite analytical. I didn’t notice that for long and I always doubted if I could be a real artist. So I started to get literally in touch with art as a restorer. To feel the surface of a painting or a sculpture, to immerse in how it was made, was very exciting and deeply inspiring. I also participated in the discussion of sense and absurdity of restoring art – to reconstruct something which was affected by time or to clean away its history. In Nyköping/ Sweden I learned from my much valued teacher Peter Tångeberg to adopt a more reluctant attitude and to appreciate the aesthetics of time’s marks. I think this attitude still affects my work, because I really believe that these marks fire the imagination and trigger the process of memory. As I looked deeply inside of the chemical aging process of materials I conclude there is no way and no need of preventing this process from an aesthetic point of view. For me an aged surface has an identity and tells stories about its past. This also means to accept physical and chemical corrosion and the vanishing in particular in order to appreciate identity and authenticity. At the end it is an ex-


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amination about the process of dying and its aesthetic shapes. As a restorer I learned how to read the history of a surface consciously and in a cognitive way. The audience is also able to read these stories, but unconsciously and in an emotional way. Indeed personal experience and cultural background play a central role in how I developed my attitude toward creative expression and my point of interest. Born 1973 in Timişoara in Romania as a member of the Banat Swabians, a German minority living in Romania for 250 years, I learned from my parents not to identify myself with the natives, but to believe that I am German and my real home country is Germany, which I never have seen before and which became an Utopian place in my fantasy. At that time Romania was a communist country behind the Iron Curtain and ruled by the dictator Nicolai Ceauşescu. So it was almost impossible to leave the country towards Germany or somewhere else to the West. After a policy of detente my family immigrated 1979 to Germany as many Swabian families did at that time. As Karl Jaspers said, a German psychiatrist and philosopher “home is, where we understand and where we are understood”, I didn’t feel like coming home – I felt myself strange, and people treated me like a stranger. My constructed identity, which worked fine in Romania, suddenly broke down. Who was I? I couldn’t relocate myself in Germany, but I also wasn’t allowed to relocate myself in Romania! This discrepancy is not unique, but a kind of collective identity crises, which I observe in my fellow Swabians. The old photographs in our family album and my father’s stories about his child-

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hood in Romania became the most important elements to identify myself with something. And again, a Utopian place of longing developed in my fantasy, which was located not in space but in time. To understand this process and to treat the correlations is very important in my working. Memory is something very flexible, and our brain is a brilliant artist, who adapts to an optimized learning for the future. To remember is a creative act, which can be triggered subconsciously – by the way, very interesting for me was a scientific study, which came to the conclusion that it is even possible to convince our brain to remember something, which never happened. However, we have to trust memory, because it tells us who we are in a chronological context. To lose memory leads to an existential identity crises. My engagement at the H2-Contemporary Art Centre in Augsburg was in the role of an observer and teacher, and not as an artist. I performed guiding tours for children and adults. It was a very interesting time for me to learn intensively about contemporary artist’s ideas and concepts and to communicate them to an ordinary audience. As I come from a working class background, I came in touch with contemporary art quite late at school. I realized that there are different ways to see the world and all of them are right – that was exciting! This awareness I want to show and open up to others, who don’t have access to art education. You are a versatile artist: your approach ranges in transition of photography and video, of visual and sonic relevance to accomplish an organic investigation about the interface between such disci-

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plines: the results convey together a coherent and consistent sense of unity. Before starting to elaborate about your production, we would suggest to our readers to visit http://www.eri-kassnel.de/ in order to get a synoptic view of your work: while walking our readers through your process, we would like to ask you if you have you ever happened to realize that such cross disciplinary investigation about the interstitial space between photography and video is the only way to express and convey the idea you explore.

The presentation of a process in general is something very dynamic, which is predestined to visualize by serial images or moving images. But on the other hand, the process, I want to show, is diffuse and conflicting. So, it is seems likely to use a contradictory design vocabulary, as well. As I experimented for many years with photography – analogue and digital – I found something very interesting in capturing moving objects in static shots. I took pictures out of the moving car or I captured dancers by long time exposure. To find a formal language for my idea was a long way. For example in Letters from Utopia – a piece from 2012 with 53 envelops, which represent a fictional correspondence between the present and the past – I separated the photo prints and joined them again by sewing it together. In the piece Home is somewhere else (2013) I filled an old family album with a huge amount of old photographs and my own images, which I manipulated in a way, so they look old. These are attempts to find a formal equivalent to my idea. As a logical consequence I ended up on slide shows like Paradise lost or stop-motion animations like Postludium or Return to Paradise. Here another important element could be included: the sound.

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Sounds and music are highly triggering components, as well. A crowing rooster, for example, evokes pictures in our heads of very broad range depending on the personal experience. But as humans our perception is mostly aimed at visual impulses. So, if the eye is distracted, a sonic impulse operates more subconsciously. Or in the other case, if we only have the sonic impulse, a story becomes more abstract and the visualisation happens in our imagination. Both effects are combined, if I create a sound installation first and add a slide show then – not to concretise, but to make it even more abstract, like I did in Paradise lost. For this special edition of ARTiculAction we have selected Return to paradise an extremely interesting video that our readers have already started to get to know in the introductory pages of this article. What has at once captured our attention of your inquiry into the dislocation between space and time and the role of memory in the attempt to establish a channel of communication between past and present. While walking our readers through the genesis of Return to paradise, we would like you to elaborate about the role of memory in your process.

Beside paradise in the bible, there are many “paradises� in our mind, like childhood or home, which are located in time, not in space any more. The only way to return to these paradises is to remember. But the recalling process is exposed to different disruptions: Sometimes this process feels like searching for the right transmitter, but there are overlying frequencies or simply bad weather, which disturb the reception. Sometimes it feels like trying to read an old data carrier, which lost more and

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more its information over the time. What remains is a vague picture, which is disrupted by static noise and requires a large amount of interpretation. So, my idea for Return to Paradise was to generate a kind of metaphor for the process of remembering to make it more understandable. Memory isn’t always available; it isn’t always complete and it doesn’t even have to be true. We know that unconsciously. That’s why we collect pictures and glue them into a photo album or store them on our computer – to have an aid to memory and to have an evidence of our own existence. I gather from this an existential fear: who am I, if I can’t trust memory? And have I ever existed, if I leave no traces? I want to confuse, and I want to confront with this fear. However, Return to Paradise is a slide show of static shots. The movement and dynamic appears by disrupting the pictures by different kinds of static noises – visually and acoustically. It is obvious that this is an illusion - of what? An illusion of paradise? Like memory makes us believe, that childhood was a paradise? As you have remarked in the tagline of Return to paradise, the only way to get back to the "paradises” in our mind is to remember: we have particularly appreciated the way your hybrid approach accomplishes the difficult task of capturing non-sharpness, bringing to a new level of significance the elusive still ubiquitous relationship between experience and memory in consequence of the exposure to a variety of disruptions. What is the role of chance in your process:? And how much improvisation is important for you?

Return to Paradise was accomplished in

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a time when I was travelling quite a lot on highways, mostly as a co-driver. I used to have my photo camera with me to kill the time. But somehow I really got attracted by something that happened to me while shooting:


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It excited me like a hunter to react immediately and to catch the motives with my camera while the car moved on speedily. The random places and the abstract and diffuse, but however very clear pictures seemed perfectly to visual-

ize representative locations, which are no longer connected to a certain place, but a certain time. As I would call myself a self-controlled and focused person, it became more and

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Postludium

more a concept, to leave the control to the hazard and to improvise with the results. Another interesting work from yours that has particularly impressed us and

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on which we would like to spend some words is entitled Postludium: a performative piece that you have defined an obituary for the former gasworks area in Augsburg/Oberhausen. It has been deeply impacted on us for its non linear approach to narrative form. How have


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1915 it supplied the population in Augsburg with gas electricity and then it was used as a headquarters by the municipal energy supplier for 40 years. For decades it was forgotten, but lately the interest about this area has come back. Postludium, which means “after play”, is an obituary for this location, which soon will be rebuilt for a new purpose. In the end of 2015 I visited the area, which normally isn’t accessible for the public, for the first. I immediately got attracted by the atmosphere of the metal chambers of the gasometers with their impressive height, the strange acoustic and the obvious time marks. It looked like something very unique, which has to be conserved somehow. I took the chance to save the buildings in my own way – by taking pictures of it. In my eyes the empty rooms had a strong identity, filled up with memories and unspoken stories. Probably there was some triggering effect, as well, as I grew up in a surrounding with industrial character. So, I wanted to show the “ghosts” of the past somehow.

you developed the structure of Postludium?

The gaswork area in Augsburg/ Oberhausen is an electricity industry area

Postludium I developed as a composition of three stand-alone parts: Firstly, the static shots of the interior of the chambers. Secondly, a stop-motion animation of a ghost-like dance, performed by the much appreciated dancer, Alessandra La Bella, who has a strong narrative expression in her contemporary dance. The shooting took place in a completely different context three years before. For me this discrepancy makes the concept even more plausible. Thirdly, the sound, which is an autonomous art piece, created by the sound

from the middle of the 19th century. Until

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artist Gerald Fiebig and the musician Christian Z. Müller. By chance I discovered that my colleague, Gerald, recorded in exactly the same disc-type gasometer the piece “Echoes of Industry”, which was produced for Radio Vltava (Czech Republic). Fiebig’s approach is to show “the fading of once visible things into a state where they are half present, half remembered” – a perfect completion to the concept of Postludium. The theme of memory and its relationship with the notion of identity is particularly in your work and we could not do without mentioning Paradise lost: the way you accomplished an insightful investigation about the act of remembering as a social process induces the viewers to a process of deconstruction of perceptual reality to recontextualize it into collective imagery. This process accomplishes the difficult task of constructing aesthetics from experience, working on both subconscious and conscious level. So we would take this occasion to ask you if in your opinion personal experience is absolutely indispensable as part of the creative process? Do you think that a creative process could be disconnected from direct experience?

As I try to connect to the audience’s experiences, I would say, it absolutely is indispensable for my creative process. In Paradise lost I emphasize how important it is, to share memories. We see and understand ourselves better through the eyes of others. It is a part of a social process, which forms identity; especially if we for any reason can’t remember ourselves. We compare our memories, we supplement

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and correct them. Sometimes we even have to replace them, because they turn out to be false. So, the creative process is a running communication between the inside and the outside.


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I confront the audience with my personal perception, which actually is a discussion between two parties: the audience and me. In Paradise lost I add a third party: my father shares his memory as a German child in Romania during the Second

World War. The audience is now confronted with my perception about my father’s memories, which makes the creative process even more sophisticated and abstract.

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Postludium

It's no doubt that interdisciplinary collaborations as the ones you have established over these years are today ever growing forces in Contemporary Art and that the most exciting things happen when creative minds from different

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fields of practice meet and collaborate on a project... could you tell us something about this effective synergy? By the way, Peter Tabor once stated that "collaboration is working together with another to create something as a synthe-


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but the most important one is that my ideas are based on the exchange of different kinds of experiences in order to develop new ideas and skills. For me it is very important not to remain standing, but to move on somehow, and the impulse often comes from the outside. As I showed in the case of Postludium, collaboration can be a synergy of parallel investigations. To consolidate them makes the idea even more powerful. In particular my collaboration with Gerald Fiebig opened up new fields of working, for both of us. Our first common project was Utopia lives next door. We discovered by chance that we investigated in the same field and in a similar way about our past: he recorded his grandmother’s memories about her childhood in Vienna, the same did I with my father’s memories about his childhood in Timişoara. As we realized that there is a joint connection between the two towns, which is located in history, we had the idea to create a Utopian place, where the East meets the West, where the past meets the present. The soundscape composition with fieldrecordings of both towns and interviews of our relatives was broadcast in the Austrian Radio Ö1 Kunstradio – Radiokunst

sis of two practices, that alone one could not": what's your point about this? Can you explain how your work demonstrates communication between several artists?

There are many reasons for collaboration,

on the 27th of December 2015. That was a new field of activity for me. While generating a slide show for the project, I encouraged Gerald to travel to Vienna to take some pictures for it, as I did in Timişoara. I guess he never planned before to get involved with photography. Our next project will be an exhibition with a third colleague, Jakob Krattiger, in the Neue Galerie im Höhmannhaus in Augsburg. As Jakob created a photographic series of the transforma-

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tion of a specific building in Augsburg, we developed a concept of site-specific and time-based dislocations. Over these years you works have been internationally showcased and it has been recently featured at VideoGUD in Gävleborg and at the International Video Art House Festival in Madrid. One of the hallmarks of your work is the capability to create direct involvement with the viewers, who are urged to evolve from a condition of mere spectatorship. So before leaving this conversation we would like to pose a question about the nature of the relationship of your art with your audience. Do you consider the issue of audience reception as being a crucial component of your decisionmaking process, in terms of what type of language is used in a particular context?

Well, if I am in the middle of a creative process, I don’t think too much about the audience. But while confronting the audience with my work I am really interested about the reflections – it fires my imagination, as well. For example in 2013 I participated in the X-border-art biennial in Rovaniemi/ Finland. There has been arranged a blog in the internet, where the visitors could write down their thoughts about the exposition objects. I really was astonished how close the notions to my own ideas were. People wrote about the Second World War or about old times in Russia without knowing anything about my concept – but in fact, the

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Paradise lost

landscapes in this work were movingcar-images in today’s Germany. Thanks a lot for your time and for sharing your thoughts, Eri. Finally, would you like to tell us readers something about your future


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projects? How do you see your work evolving?

There is happening something around us since the digital evolution. It has something to do with virtual reality, virtual identity and virtual memory. I am very excited

to explore these fields and the joint connections to existing reality.

An interview by Dario Rutigliano, curator and Barbara Scott, curator articulaction@post.com

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L ang Ea Lives and works in Auckland, New Zealand

An artist's statement

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y works are a compilation of emotional narratives, fuelled by personal experience of the Cambodian Khmer Rouge regime, interwoven with the lingering resonances of historical trauma, where the burden of history and memory combine to enhance my vision. My dramatic, illustrative, thoughtful images and references evolve from my personal narrative, collective memory, literature, and mass media to expose what is lingering in my subconscious associated with a childhood amid war. I create imageries which causes viewers to engage, not always comfortably, although providing insight into my

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concepts and vision, while stimulating the social conscience. In my recent art works, I take the Comics in art inspired by the British and American Pop Art and the world of speech balloons, I process, deconstruct, and reassemble in a new shape to create sculptures and space-encompassing sculpture installations. In so doing, the work do not reproduce a supposedly naive and cheerful surface, it is a critical investigation of aesthetic and social phenomena, disturbing and subversive-political allusion frequently expressing wittiness, humour, and biting irony.

Lang Ea


'KA -BOOM!' (2016) sculpture installation (site specific)- 600+ red wool pom poms, within a 15m radius Sculpture at scenic world 2016, Blue Mountains/Sydney, Australia (photo courtesy of Gary.P.Hayes)


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Lang Ea An interview by Josh Ryder, curator and Barbara Scott, curator articulaction@post.com actionart@europe.com

Multidisciplinary artist Lang Ea's work explores a variety of issues that affects our unstable contemporary age, drawing inspiration from her Cambodian origins. As she remarked once, her works are commentaries on politics, consumer culture and the process of social perception that explore my interest in the personal yet universal challenges of war. In her installation Ka -Boom!(2016) that we'll be discussing in the following pages she draws the viewers through a multilayered experience to establish a channel of communication between the subconscious sphere and perceptual reality. One of the most convincing aspects of Ea's approach is the way it accomplishes to create an unconventional and engaging narrative: we are really pleased to introduce our readers to her stimulating artistic production. Hello Lang and a warm welcome to ARTiculAction: to start this interview, would you like to tell us something about your background? You have a solid formal training and after your studies in Architecture and Design, you nurtured your education with a Bachelor of Design that you received

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from the Victoria University, in Wellington, New Zealand: how do these experiences influence your evolution as an artist? And in particular, how does your cultural substratum due to your Cambodian origins inform the way you relate yourself to art making and to the aesthetic problem in general?

As an emigrant to a new country, I was advised not to attend Art school as it was an uncertain career path. I was an all rounder student, but it was obvious from the start that my talent shines in art. After my studies, I worked in the fashion industry, but I would come home wanting to paint or sculpt. During the following years I started a series of 12 paintings called ‘The Red cross series’ (1998-2000). I believe this series had come straight from my subconscious as I was only 6 months old when my recently wedded parents were forced to the Khmer Rouge work camps and I have no conscious memories of my early childhood. Half way through the series I was curious and decided to make my first visit back to Cambodia in 1999, but found that I still have no memory connecting me to the country, people or the advents during my early childhood with the Pol Pot’s regime. Perhaps that is why the 12 paintings are full of symbolism, rather then realistic representations. The paintings consist


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of two main characters –the butterfly and the mosquito, with the Red Cross symbol prominent in every painting. ‘The Red cross series’ paved the direction of my work to date, unleashing my subconscious, searching for truth and meaning. Your approach coherently combines everyday materials including resin, polystyrene, glass, concrete, ceramic and wool to convey an effective emotional narrative: the results convey together a coherent and consistent sense of harmony and unity. Before starting to elaborate about your production, we would suggest to our readers to visit http://www.langeagallery.com in order to get a synoptic view of your multifaceted artistic production: while walking our readers through your process, we would like to ask you if you have ever happened to realize that such approach is the only way to express and convey the idea you explore.

I use different techniques from painting to sculpture and installation only as a vessel to express and explore my concepts. I would experiment with what ever medium necessary to best express and convey the ideas I am exploring, however the subject remains the same, which is why there is a coherent or consistency within all of my work even though I have used and combined a different approach in each art work. For this special edition of ARTiculAction we have selected Ka Boom! an interesting project that our readers have already started to get to know in the introductory pages of this article. This installation was partly 'KA -BOOM!' (2016) -sculpture installation (site specific)- 600+

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red wool pom poms, within a 15m radius. Sculpture at scenic world 2016, Blue Mountains/Sydney, Australia, photo courtesy of Gary.P.Hayes

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'KA -BOOM!' (2016) -sculpture installation (site specific)- 600+red wool pom poms, within a 15m radius. Sculpture at scenic world 2

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prompted from beneath the cloud, one of your previous painting series. What has at once caught our attention of this work is the way it challenges the viewers' perceptual parameters stimulating the social conscience and urging us to rethink and sometimes even subvert the way we relate ourselves to such ubiquitous concepts: while walking our readers through the genesis of Ka -Boom!, would you shed light on the role of memory in your process?

You could say that my subconscious memory have subverted my direction and concept of all my art work. Ka –Boom! was to challenge the viewer‘s perception and perspective of an actual KA –BOOM!, The red wool Pom Poms has been used for aesthetic purpose, as well as a metaphor for all the tragedies that a KA –BOOM! would cause. I have found after exhibiting the work, that the red pom pom wools are not so obscure in its relation to war, universally known as the ‘pom-pom ‘, was a 40-millimetre (1.6€in) British auto cannon, used famously as an anti-aircraft gun by the Royal Navy. The name came from the sound that the original models make when firing. Ka -Boom! is a vehicle for feeling and references Pop art and provides the viewers with an intense, immersive experience: how do you see the relationship between public sphere and the role of art in public space? In particular, how much do you consider the immersive nature of the viewing experience and how importance has 016, Blue Mountains/Sydney, Australia, photo courtesy of Gary.P.Hayes

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improvisation in your process?

It is crucial that the audience is drawn to or evoke by the work, creating a dialogue by immersing them aesthetically, emotionally and informatively, I think Art works which questions the human narrative needs to be within the public sphere. The improvisation process is more apparent within a public space, it’s a constant problem solving exercise, as the audience are more diverse compared to exhibiting within an art gallery. Drawing from highly symbolic and evocative elements from contemporary imagery, Ka -Boom! Provokes direct relations in the viewers and accomplishes the difficult task of going beyond the surface of communication. We find this aspect particularly interesting: what kind of reactions did you expect to provoke in the viewers?

A successful Art work needs to firstly appeal to the eyes of the viewer, this will drew them into the work, then when they read the title ‘ Ka Boom! ’ they smile ‘…does the work mean something more or should I just enjoy its beauty and awesomeness ’ The work can be enjoyed from many levels I have seen children getting excited by the colour and scale of the work, perhaps it’s like entering some fantasy world for them. Then the parents would play along with their children on this level and choose not to entertain the serious side of the work. For me this is very interesting as that is exactly what we are doing, we have an attitude that as long as it’s not effecting

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us personally we can choose to ignore it. Acting innocent like children, and blame others who have caused the tragedy and destruction. I take the view that we are all to blame, peace will only come if everyone of us starts listening to each other so that we may learn to understand each other’s ideas and differences and perhaps stop our fears from festering into war. Your works could be considered multisensorial biographies that unveil the aesthetic consequences of a combination between tactile, concrete reality and the evocative power conveyed by symbols that lead you to explore unexpected aspects of the functionality of language on the aesthetic level: as Gerhard Richter once remarked, "my concern is never art, but always what art can be used for": what is your opinion about the functional aspect of Art in the contemporary age?

Art will play its role just as it’s always done throughout our history, as the old saying goes ‘ A picture paints a thousand words ’ Religion, politics, advertising industries.. etc has always used Artists to reach its followers crossing languages and race barriers, including the illiterate. However when a great Artist like Picasso uses Art to convey the destruction of War like his work ‘ Guernica ’ (1937), this is when the power of an art work goes beyond its functionality, as the work makes one statement yet evokes a million and one emotions, crossing all human barriers and the meaning is so timeless as it relates to any moment throughout our human history.


' Listen ' 2014 -sculpture installation cast ciment fondu , fibre glass with polystyrene core -NZ sculpture on shore, Auckland, New Zealand; collection of IoDeposito NGO Pontebba (UD), Italy


Close up of ' Listen II -remains ' 2015 -site specific - installation - 20 sculptures -cast ciment fondu , fibre glass


with polystyrene core -Sculpture at Scenic World 2015, Blue Mountains/ Sydney, Australia


' W.O.M.D II -Target ' (2012) -Utopia into Dystopia exhibition– HD polystyrene and concrete base, 1000mmh x 280m


md; sculpture installation -Waitakaruru Sculpture Park, Hamilton, New Zealand


' W.O.M.D ' (2012) Sculpture on shore- HD polystyrene and concrete base, 1000mmh x 280mmd, sculpture installation -NZ Sculpture on the Shore 2012, Auckland, New Zealand


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Your successful attempt to produce a dialectical fusion that operates as a system of symbols creates a compelling non linear narrative that, walking the thin line between conceptual and literal meanings, establishes direct relations with the viewers. German multidisciplinary artist Thomas Demand once stated that "nowadays art can no longer rely so much on symbolic strategies and has to probe psychological, narrative elements within the medium instead". What is your opinion about it? And in particular how do you conceive the narrative for your works?

My work is psychological, and the narrative can be considered as a self helping reflection of my psyche, as it is driven by my subconscious urging to satisfy its craving to question and reflect meaning and truth. I take the intangible concept from my subconscious and make it tangible for myself and my viewer to contemplate with me. As you have remarked once, your works are a compilation of emotional narratives, fuelled by personal experience of the Cambodian Khmer Rouge regime: while lots of artists from the contemporary scene, as Ai WeiWei or more recently Jennifer Linton, use to convey open socio-political criticism in their works, you seem more interested to hint the direction, inviting the viewers to a process of self-reflection that may lead to subvert a variety of usual, almost stereotyped cultural categories. Do you consider that your works could be considered political in a certain sense or did you seek to maintain a more neutral approach? And in particular, what could be in your

opinion the role that an artist could play in the contemporary society?

My works are charged with political and social criticism, however the art works are not political statements or open criticism like the works of artists like Ai WeiWei or Jennifer Linton, instead my art works are invitations to take a moment with me to contemplate and reflect what I am trying to address. Like all the other professions within society, I believe Artists play just an important role. The way an Artist thinks about the world in many ways are very different, and to be able to convey an idea to a mass audience can play a very important and powerful role within contemporary society. This is perhaps why Artist like Ai WeiWei can be a serious threat to a government as he can provide more meaning to the mass then the government can. Over these years you participated in several group and solo shows and you are going to exhibit ‘POP!BANG! BOOM! little Pom Poms always turn into the mother of all POM ’ for Sculpture by the sea 2016 –Bondi in Sydney. One of the hallmarks of your practice is the capability to create direct involvement with the viewers, who are urged to evolve from a condition of mere spectatorship. So before leaving this conversation we would like to pose a question about the nature of the relationship of your art with your audience. Do you consider the issue of audience reception as being a crucial component of your decision-making process, in terms of what type of language is used in a particular context?

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Broken toys ' (2015) –with Poem 200mmx 200mmx 180mm, resin, fibre glass -Lorne Small Sculpture Award –Melbourne, Australia

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My main focus and decision-making for each work is the concept, and the finished art work needs to evoke a response from the audience even negative ones, otherwise I believe the work is a failure and becomes a piece of object that was put there for no purpose. Thanks a lot for your time and for sharing your thoughts, Lang. Finally, would you like to tell us readers something about your future projects? How do you see your work evolving?

I am currently working on the work mentioned above for the Sydney international sculpture exhibition –2.5m ball structure with pom poms, which has been very challenging. I am heading over in August to a Artist Residency at Red gate in Beijing, China, and following it with an exhibition scheduled for mid next year. And in March 2017 I will go to another Artist Residency at the Vermont studio art centre in Johnson, USA. While I will be doing all of this my work ‘ Listen ’ (2014) is doing a tour in Europe including France and Belgium, from 30th of July 2016 to 2018, starting in the Trenches of Stavoli dei Plans of Dogna, Italy. I don’t know what will come next from my subconscious, all I know is that it’s not ready to stop yet.

An interview by Josh Ryder, curator and Barbara Scott, curator articulaction@post.com

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A na Santos Lives and works in Porto, Portugal

I get tired of myself too early, I don´t speak of me, me as myself, I speak from the way the others look at me. Once they thought I was a boy: A joke to my ears that echoed in my deepest wishes. I don´t have a problem with that; I think it’s funny, I hope tomorrow they think I’m a lizard, I already am, but nobody saw it. BUILD, BUILD, BUILD, EAT, FUCK, DIE, REBORN.

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’m not me anymore, the journey which was proposed to me from the moment I was introduced to the world as Ana,

random name that was chosen by someone random and so far unknown, stayed with me. My debut in the world in 1992, was marked by ignorance, except of course, for whom carried me for nine months. Since that moment, I saw, heard, read and lived parallel realities, however, complementary to mine. To make a statement as Myself, being someone as a person, being talkative, I am faced constantly under the watchful eyes of others, an apparent view in relation to myself. It’s needed, It’s urgent, It’s what defines the century, otherwise I wouldn’t be writing for someone now, everyone wants to know who you are, and who are you?. What interests me, is reappropriate all that lecture that stands distant from me and incorporate it in my speech. I can be everything, however, nothing is valid. Only I know that. Currently, I’m 24 years old, my recent past, it’s summed up in a back and forth between Design and Visual Arts. By the time I was 17, I was studying Industrial Design, by my 20’s I showed

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up between Communication and Multimedia Design. I ask myself many times: why? Because I submitted myself to study for about six years the technical language between body-machinemind-image. I talk about technique because I understand now, after a while, all that educational process, despite having nothing to do with me, helped me to understand my latest work. What we understand and how we interact with the machine, processes that connect us with it, the image which it produces and how we are capable of manipulate it in a way that incorporates new sub-species of the self. Currently, I’m finishing my master’s degree in Contemporary Artistic Practices, at Faculty of Fine Arts (FBAUP). In my 24 years old, I rediscover myself, my work although recent it’s in a phase of self-discovery, of alert and constantly changing. I often work with installation, video, light, I’m interested by new approaches that permanently destroy the body and build it as an intellectual part, detached from the meat. Under a dromologic approach, everything that is constructed destroys itself, that construction is automatically interlocked with the speed, with a body that adapts itself and in other cases it escapes. After all, everything that’s yours, will always stay with you. The Others and Those eyes, will be constant (re)apropriations. My proposal since always, will be play with the speed itself, the way that we are constantly demanded to inovate, in this case, I'll make it by playing with the way they look at me and as having been born in this age I can and I fell, it will be my mission to reverse all the signs that rule and imprison the body still, to a nostalgia that does not define it anymore.

Ana Santos


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Ana Santos An interview by Josh Ryder, curator and Barbara Scott, curator articulaction@post.com

Porto based artist Ana Santos' work explores a variety of issues that affect our unstable contemporary age, focussing on the deconstruction of body language and inviting the viewers to rethink about the notion of identity. In her recent work entitled Prótese, mon amour grau 1, that we'll be discussing in the following pages, she challenges the viewers' perceptual parameters, drawing them through a multilayered investigation and accomlishing an insightful inquiry into the notion of personalization process. One of the most convincing aspect of Santos' approach is the way it condenses the permanent flow of associations in the realm of memory and experience: we are really pleased to introduce our readers to her stimulating artistic production. Hello Ana and a warm welcome to ARTiculAction: to start this interview, would you like to tell us something about your background? You have a background in Design and Visual Arts and you are currently nurturing your education with amaster’s degree in Contemporary Artistic Practices, that you are currently pursuing at Faculty of Fine Arts: how does this experience impact on the way you conceive your works? And in particular, how does your

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cultural substratum inform the way you relate yourself to art making and to the aesthetic problem in general?

Well, by the age of 17 I started studying Comunication Design, whatever that is, and before that I studied Industrial Design. I say, “whatever that is” because comunication and the way I see it and what that word means, intrigued me. In fact, at that time I was comunicating through an unrealistic perspective, because in some cases it was an exact science, which honestly does not work very well to me. Now, what I've learned from this journey is another story. I still find it interesting the right "manipulation" given the image, we unfold constantly with it, by that I mean that I creating a picture of myself, the people who will see it will withdraw a completely distant reading of my original intention. In truth, all this is the mirror of modernity. The production of objects and images for sale is done in a completely nonsensical and fast way, who can keep up with all this? No one. The image of today is identity, we are in the show window, we produce what we want from ourselves, what we wanted to do, where we wanted to be as well we could wear/eat at that time. This concept is a bit schizophrenic because doesn't come out of the private sphere, although presents itself to the world, it happens for socio-technological means.


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CROSSdresser in Amor Marginal, CAAA- Centro para Assuntos da Arte e Arquitectura, Portugal 2015

My proposal will be: why not apply this system in the social identity process? "There is a demand for authenticity, but no way at all for spontaneity." Gilles Lipovetsky says in his book «The Age of emptiness», and reflects well the idea

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that I want to expose here. Life shouldn’t be taken so seriously. I don’t bring truth nor the answer, I constantly propose to play with existence itself. Unfortunately, I see the social and individual miles away apart, they do not go together, I see spasms of people that suddenly think outside the box, however, that box


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think NOT having a structure is also having one. For this special edition of ARTiculAction we have selected Prรณtese, mon amour grau 1, an interesting project that our readers have already started to get to know in the introductory pages of this article. What has at once caught our attention your inquiry into the identity concealment is the way it plays up the boundary between the way we relate to the everyday and he impact of the environment we inhabit on our perceptual parameters: while walking our readers through the genesis of Prรณtese, mon amour grau 1, would you shed light on the way your main source of inspiration for your pieces?

is suburban, especially if it stirs with the mode and way of life, even with it's own body, is pushed to the "out of the box". The "values" are still quite traditional and biological, structural and biopolitical. All the concepts named above are usually applied by all people but are never applied in everyday social life. I

We live, in general, in a very narcissistic perspective, it looks like we carry a mirror in front of our faces all the time. As I mentioned earlier, the image bombing in more traditional means which we can't control directly, they spread the cruelty and chaos, we are the liabilities of the story. On the other hand, we have social networks, with a narcissist content, however, here we create our own identity, it is often forged by ourselves, far from reality it mutates, it is destroyed and suddenly reborn. We create lives and alter egos, we are and we stay exposed to the gaze of others. What I did with Prรณtese, Mon amour grau 1 was recombine all these symbols and put them on the street chaos. Is not by chance that during the performance, a lady speaks loudly to me, "This is not carnival", then I realize it was the rule of the day because, within her logic it is evident how the standardization schemes make our common-sense

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obligate us into respecting the days and appropriate spaces for certain actions. I mean there is a crack, but only in the days of certain celebrations we can become whatever we want, that is, within the common sense logic, we have to respect the days stipulated for this kind of "boldness" and in this sense, intrigues me this statement of that lady, along with other comments like "it takes courage" because they point to what is missing, in fact, is the carnival of life, the whimsy of things. I firmly believe in the words written in Manifesto Contrassexual by Paul B. Preciado, to change something we have to shake the system through its foundations. Well, personally I don’t want to change anything, I only show ways of seeing the chaos through another view. There was someone who impressed me enough since I was a child, Leigh Bowery, always fascinated me his multiple interpretations of himself, the way he put signs out of their original context and produced new meanings. Furthermore, I have a great fascination for the 80's, I think it was an era in which rebellion and personal discovery defied against the system, was undoubtedly a socially turning page around a more equal and affirmative structure to individual values. There are other artists whose work I admire, I will speak only one worth mentioning because had a lot of influence on my recent works, I talk about Heather Cassils, more precisely CUTS: A TRADITIONAL SCULPTURE. Besides reflecting perfectly the post- modern society, the treatment of the body as enhanced sculpture and the shaping of the body as if it were maneuverable, it

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Prรณtese, mon amour grau 1 in Porto, Portugal 2015, Photos by Paulo Aureliano da Mata

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Prรณtese, mon amour grau 1 in Porto, Portugal 2015, Photos by Paulo Aureliano da Mata

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includes a good test to the opposite of social binarism composed of male and female visuals. It is a raw and objective work that pleases me a lot. PrĂłtese, mon amour grau 1 is pervaded with a subtle but effective narrative, and we have particularly appreciated the way it captures non-sharpness of physicality with an universal kind of language, capable of bringing to a new level of significance the elusive but ubiquitous relationship between experience and memory: what is the role of memory in your process? We are particularly interested if you try to achieve a faithful translation of your previous experiences or if you rather use memory as starting point to create.

This is an interesting question, it got me thinking for a while. In fact, the memory is written in myself, as a process and as a return of experiences. However, as I face mixed covers in my work and how I use my creative process as a constant reboot, sometimes the memories tend to be nonexistent or simply replaceable. The memory has an important part yes, but its simply as a personal process, rarely or almost never to speak the truth, I rewrite it in my work. Despite it being there, it incorporates other forms rather than mine, so I establish that process as a reboot, they’re connected but not by consequence. I always use the memory but as a process of reboot. Marked out with an effective performative feature, your work provides the viewers with an intense, immersive experience: how much do you consider the immersive nature of the viewing experience and how much

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importance has improvisation in your process?

To answer this question, I have to start reversing the viewer’s logical sense, because who is it, it’s me. Initialy when I make and execute the action, I get an interesting sensation related to my own apparition, I fell like seeing the world through different eyes. That sensation pleases me and I feel that throughout my path who’s watching them it’s me. That’s why initialy when I talked to you, mentioned that I find myself in a permanent state of alert. I think the process it’s reversed when it is resume in form of video recording. About the improvisation process, I wouldn’t call it that way but yes naturalization. Improvisation always sounds like simulation. The naturalization of the gestures that embody other forms, that’s what seems very important to me and is an important part of the action. Embody natural gestures and routine body positions about other bodies, that are visually "Intriguing" still give more emphasis to the whole process of search in a city inclusion. Drawing from accessible and evokative elements from universal imagery, Prótese, mon amour grau 1 provokes direct relations in the viewers and accomplishes the difficult task of going beyond the surface of communication. We find this aspect particularly interesting since it is probabily the only way to raise awareness about the elusive notion of identity in our unstable contemporary age, concerning both the individuals and thier place in our ever changing societies: how do you see the relationship between public sphere and the role of art in public

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space? In particular, what kind of reactions did you expect to provoke in the viewers?

When I present a work I don't intend to provoke, I know this can happen but it's not at all my initial intention, otherwise would be to contradict my own speech. If provocation exists it will never be by me, ever. It will be an interpretation from the others. The wicked look with which they look at things is the mirror of their sociocultural personal history. The use of the streets fascinates me because it is there that we can find all kinds of people with different social baggages and this is without doubt more interesting for the work. Besides having a lot more feedback, later it forces you to think it better because it will suffer mutations in his speech. The first time I presented the performance, also in Porto, titled Protese, mon amour grau 0, in which I was dressed in black and with the same mask. Due to the use of more casual clothes I got a more immediate response from the spectators, perhaps for the silhouette and the fact that accentuates more human and recognizable curvatures, there was a more sudden empathy and looks crossed quickly. The work tends to change over the years, Grau 0 and 1 will not be the last ones, I want to see how far the street is willing to welcome me. I think during the day the street is virtually in an automatic mode, almost asleep. But then at night come out all the creatures that during the day are into social camouflage. Reverse the process seems necessary to me. As you have remarked once, what interests you, is reappropriate all that


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lecture that stands distant from me and incorporate it in your speech: would you expand this statement for our readers?

As I said in response to the first two questions, there is a common point that in one way or another mark all my course so far, I have spoken of my background and have released some issues that concerns me. To answer this question, I would have to relaunch one: The speed. The way we constantly have to adapt to situations, that adaptation passes from posture to behavior, the speed with which everything changes, appears and reappears on other forms. This calls into question a story, which certainly you have to tell, when I say reappropriation is precisely take in the looks of others, readings that they make about me. Not that I care about them, because in reality all that is mine never leave my perspective, but everything I put outside can be a mirror of how they see me and it will automatically be another mirror of previously stereotyped systems in relation to habits, bodies, ways, positions. It is important for me to think this way, because usually in my routine others think that I am something / someone that I'm not. This has everything to do with the socio-cultural system, as I mentioned, in which they are inserted. It's interesting because I am giving what they want but in reality is all forged. At the end of the day the work is about my perspective and not about others. I can be whoever I want and I like to play with that. In Prótese, mon amour grau 1, you also show the aestethic consequences of a combination between the dynamic

feature of movement and the abstract concept of symbols, exploring unexpected aspects of the functionality of language on the aesthetic level: as Gerhard Richter once remarked, "my concern is never art, but always what art can be used for": what is your opinion about the functional aspect of Art in the contemporary age?

It happens because of descontextualization, it’s interesting work with symbology because it only takes to remove it from it’s context and it will gain new ways. At the same time that you’re doing it you are somehow stablishing a kind of parallelisms between realities, which suddenly cross and anulate each other and become something new. It’s interesting watching that explosion. I don’t do it in a sadistic way. I think symbology are standard and not for the better reasons are reproduced, however it’s value is neutralized. For example, when I use a penis head It’s one more penis head, It’s there for some reason which is not it’s shape, quickly people are intrigued by it’s shape not for it’s intention. The intention that is truly none, regarding the shapes, they could be others. The shape works as a whole and not as divided symbologies. In this case in particular, works as a identity process in construction that has no fixed shape. This final concept, fits objectively in the question, art does not have the goal of being functional, actually it has no goal, at least not on purpose. Art does not own some plan, initial or final, even because it is constantly changing. The artist can posteriorly give sense to it, almost personifies it. The object/process of art gets sense, or not,

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through all those symbols or their absence. In a last analysis probably could rise an objective question, that gets in a process of recognizing the shapes. The spector relates with it, knows it and identifies with it. As a consequence it gains multiple senses, because it is under of readings and the process of recognizing which is also mutable. The observation begins from a revisit to memory that is written under multiple senses. The art works as a shadow, it’s not about the object itself but the way it is reflected, takes form. And even there, it will be subjected to it’s surrounding environment. While lots of artists from the contemporary scene, as Ai WeiWei or more recently Jennifer Linton, use to convey open socio-political criticism in their works, you seem more interested to hint the direction, inviting the viewers to a process of self- reflection that may lead to subvert a variety of usual, almost stereotyped cultural categories. Do you consider that your works could be considered political in a certain sense or did you seek to maintain a more neutral approach? And in particular, what could be in your opinion the role that an artist could play in the contemporary society?

A few years back I read in a article by Thomas Hirschhorn saying “I don’t do political art, but yes politically.”, it seems to me that this concept had been reapropriated from Jean-Luc Godard in which he identified himself imediatly. Well, I think it’s applied to this case, specially the question made. I don’t have at all interest in following political idiologies, as a way of preacher. I’m

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more interested in giving shape, rise questions and take action upon them in the right time and moment. Art will have to function like a broken mirror, you reflet what’s surrouding you and what worries you, however you leave space to individual thinking take place. All those


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broken pieces help you to understand the detail of image sometimes see it as a whole end up being distrative and unrealistic. I think the part of an artist, it’s exacly it, have the capacity of broking the mirror, maybe invert it, unmaking it, leave it in complete pieces

and place it above another prism. The artist has a place of prestige in society, we take action on issues, we show our ideas and sometimes we are heard. But only the fact that there’s predisposition for listening me, it’s already a privilege, there’s a lot of people who don’t have an

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opportunity. I think we have to think by that perspective it’s not like we are the owners of the vaccine, the question is that we are the opposite, we are the virus. And that’s not on purpose, it end

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up happening because simply we show our worries and it inflame one time or another. “Riot sound effects can produce can actual riot in a riot situation” BURROUGHS, WILLIAM


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this conversation we would like to pose a question about the nature of the relationship of your art with your audience. Do you consider the issue of audience reception as being a crucial component of your decision-making process, in terms of what type of language is used in a particular context?

When the decision exists it only happens after the action had been completed, that decision is in fact one reflexion that takes to posterior decisions relatively to other works. If the decisions exist, they’re posterior. When I presented this performance in São Paulo, even being aware of the problems I could cause, I did it anyway the same way. If I changed that action, I would be reverting the process, I would adapt to the city and not the other way around. In Brazil there were very unreleased reactions, busses stopping and people with their heads out the window, angry looks, parents closing their children eyes and also laughing and smiling - which is different. Thanks a lot for your time and for sharing your thoughts, Ana. Finally, would you like to tell us readers something about your future projects? How do you see your work evolving ?

One of the hallmarks of your practice is the capability to create direct involvement with the viewers, who are urged to evolve from a condition of mere spectatorship. So before leaving

My concerns remain, however, they took another paths. Throughout this interview I’ve been anticipating what I’m working on right now. Concretely, I can say that I have been working more with construction materials where nothing is figurative, everything are parts of objects that passed by me during my recent 24 years old of existence and I

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thought it was important to incorporate them in the works I’ve been working on recently: the light, the shadow, the absence of image, the fury, the rage, the indifference and detachment. My recent research revolves around two points: policy and body image; study of the impact of velocity about the body and an entire gender dichotomy inserted into an hetero centered system. The image, as a reproductive transparent system and consequently pornografic which systematically reinserts bodies-machine. The cyber identity: Until which point the absence of a body can be a new way of transvestism? In a more technological field, the fenomenom resides in the absence of body that consequently takes its death, leaving open space to new identity interpretations that eroticize all existence. As I build and destroy myself permanently, as I submited myself to the machine, how I felt, how I unfastened and how I find myself dead and ready to another journey. I invoke the corporal excess, its nonexistence presence, however, despite sharing here some of the refletion points I want to leave loose ends, finish the thought would be for me like finish all my construtive purpose. In a year I might be something else, but until then will stay this ideas that I share. Thank you very much for your willingness and interest.

An interview by Josh Ryder, curator and Barbara Scott, curator articulaction@post.com

Pontos e referências de contenção e fuga in Trabalha(dores)

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do cu, Maus Hรกbitos, Portugal 2015, Photo by eRevista Performatus and Rafael Amambahy

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Marta Wapiennik Lives and works in Cracow, Poland

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owadays I am creating works guided mostly by

intuition and emotions. I am trying really hard to give the most from me during the process of creation which has become more important for me than it was few years ago. I think this is the best way to deliver powerful and strong images that can move the viewer. I find inspiration in colors, textures, surroundings and nature. I treat photographs as sketches for further exploration. Modifying reality in them has become some sort of language which suits the best to my feelings and a way of perceiving the world.

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Marta Wapiennik An interview by Josh Ryder, curator and Barbara Scott, curator articulaction@post.com

Multidisciplinary artist Marta Wapiennik's work explores the notions of memory and perception: her works could be considered as visual biographies that draws the viewers through a multilayered experience. In her body of works entitled The illusion of reality that we'll be discussing in the following pages, she urges us to recontextualize elements she draws from universal imagery. One of the most impressive aspects of Wapiennik's work is her successful attempt to trigger the viewers' most limbic parameters, to challenge their perceptual categories: we are really pleased to introduce our readers to her multifaceted artistic production. Hello Marta, thanks for joining us and welcome to ARTiculAction: to start this interview, would you like to tell us something about your background? You have a solid formal training and you graduated from the Jan Matejko Academy of Fine Arts, in Cracow: how does this experience influence your evolution as an artist? In particular how does your cultural substratum inform the way you relate yourself to art making and to the aesthetic problem in general?

Hello, thank you for having me. I studied at the Graphic Department, I

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mainly focused on improving my skills in drawing and painting. I wanted to master those crafts and this was my aim. First year was hard but on the second year I went to the prof. Włdzimierz Kotkowski’s (let him rest in peace) drawing workshop and he opened my eyes to many ways we can see the subject that we are working with. Basically whatever I do in art I begin with some sketch/ drawing I have in my mind. It’s not very strict, It’s changing constantly, probably that’s why I use many layers on my photographs. I often see in a multilayered way. I evolved very slow during my studies, due to my problems with health I was excluded from the social life, art life. I had to change workshops frequently because not every teacher understood my situation. This gave me the (not necessaliry wanted) opportunity to find myself in completely new situation - for example: when I decided to do my diploma in the Poster Workshop, I found out that I am not wanted there. My last chance was to turn back to the Screenprinting Workshop run by prof.ASP Marcin Surzycki, where I stayed and developed my idea of „The illusion of reality”. That’s also the title of my additional diploma works made in Digital Photography Workshop led by dr Lech Polcyn, who helped me in solving problems that were quite new to me


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then. You can say that I ended up in this area of art partly by coincidence, but it was a good fortune. There were lot’s of difficult moments at the Cracow’s Academy of Fine Arts which is seen as a conservative one. In my opinion it’s true although they are trying to change it. Still one can quickly learn how to paint well, or draw there rather than gain knowledge about computer programs. Which can slow the process of developing talents especially at the Graphic Department. Nevertheless students are very smart and pick up all technology news by themselves at their homes. Does my cultural background plays some role in my art ? I don’t think so. I was always inspired by foreigners: Hockney, Richter, Stella, Rauchenberg… they have energy that can move the viewer. They are fresh and for everyone. Polish art in my opinion is very much connected to our history which was not a happy one so artworks can be also let’s say - heavy. There are exceptions of course but my nature tells me to run away from it and look for something what brings the NEW. Your approach reveals an incessant search of organic investigation about the realm of emotions and the results of your practice convey together a coherent and consistent sense of harmony and unity: before starting to elaborate about your production, we would suggest to our readers to visit http://www.martawapiennik.com in order to get a synoptic view of your multifaceted artistic production: while walking our readers through your process and set up, we would like to

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ask you how did you develope your style and how do you conceive your works.

Incessant search - yes, everyday I am looking for answers, I have lots of


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questions in my head, also much conflict. But the last thing I would say about my works is that they are coherent and consistent. I feel like I am frequently changing my „creation routine”. Style… is the worst thing that

one can have as a true artist. Because what is style? Characteristic quality? If one really is looking for the truth he/she will never know what the outcome of the research will be. Style is very predictable trait which I don’t want to

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have. I always feel free while creating and I never try to limit myself. That is why I use photography, painting and I mix them. I treat photos as sketches and I am always surprised when they are appreciated by viewers. For me

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they are mostly „not finished works of art�. This is the reason I digitally modify reality that is captured on them to emphasize my point of view.


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When walking our readers through the genesis of this project, we would like to ask you what is the role of chance in your process: how much improvisation is important for you?

„The illusion of reality” tells about how what we see everyday can be perceiving. What is reality to us? For everyone it’s something different that’s for sure. But do we ever try to examine, question it? Check what is the truth and what is not? Or do we just accept the things as they are because it’s more comfortable. Basically the genesis of this project was my inspiration - the topic of deconstruction. In a short story - a way of thinking that make us verify our thinking method nowadays. I would reccomend to search for the name Derrida, philosopher. The project was also an outcome of my combination of paper folding, print and photography. It’s not all done digitally, only by little part. They are real folded copies of reality put in the exact same places they were taken from, only destroyed. Should I call it an improvisation? No, it was planned. But I use „accidents” in my paintings - always.

For this special edition of ARTiculAction we have selected The illusion of reality, an extremely interesting series, that our readers have already started to get to know in the introductory pages of this article.

You draw a lot from your perceptual reality and The illusion of reality could be considered a successful attempt to create a body of works that stands as record of existence and that captures non-sharpness with an universal language. Even James Turrell’s obsession with light and color is often associated with his early experiences as a pilot... So we would take this occasion to ask you if in your opinion personal experience is an absolutely indispensable part of a creative

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process... Do you think that a creative process could be disconnected from direct experience?

It cannot be disconnected. At least I put everything I have experienced with my senses into my art. It happened that the most important for me is sight so I communicate with people through images. I wouldn’t be able to create artworks that don’t contain the truth. Arists work with their souls so what they have inside they can only give to others. If one tries to fake it, then it’s not art at all. I like to think that some people really show create works that reveal a hidden part of themselves, unnamed, that sometimes even they cannot understand. Like fears, desires, dreams etc. Your photographs seems to be the result of a lot of planning and thought, but at the same time they convey a sense of direct spontaneity that is a hallmark of your style. You seem to be wanting to move beyond a standard representation and the way you manipulate the images you capture unveils a trascendental substance, making the viewer realize that your work has a different message. How important is the character that you as the photographer impose on your images?

Thank you for such a kind words. You exactly guessed they way they are made. They are as planned as spontaneous. For example I wake up and there is a nice wheather and I feel like going to the park to take some pictures (a plan). When I’m there I just run, walk, sit - do whatever I want to

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feel the place, space, atmosphere. At the same time I photograph anything that catches my eye. I don’t think a lot


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during the process because that would take a lot energy from the shots. I learned to go with the flow. Later I work

on the digital modification. Transcendence is very important for me. I wish I could show more in

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photography - give more - like smell, wind, temperature, all the ingredients that move me. As a fragile person I am very sensitive to any change in my environment. I found that my paintings reveal more from my spirit than any view I can capture by the camera so I decided to combine them. That gives this „style” you mentioned. I still treat them as sketches and try to keep them fresh. I don’t really care about the „high quality” of the photographic structure let’s call it that way. For me photos are basic grounds to start my work from. I destroy them multiple times: pixelize them, solarize, desaturate, increase the color, cut - whatever gives me provocation, excites. If I feel it with my guts, I know that my work would have the character. It’s hard to describle what could lead to „ you must see it ” reaction, which would be the best reslut you can achieve. Staying very close to the topic of my interests, makes me very aware of any tiny detail that might weigh on the quality of works, like light, texture etc. As the late Franz West did in his early installations, your work shows unconventional aesthetics in the way it deconstructs perceptual images in order to assemble them in a collective imagery, urging the viewers to a process of self-reflection. German multidisciplinary artist Thomas Demand once stated that "nowadays art can no longer rely so much on symbolic strategies and has to probe psychological, narrative elements within the medium instead". What is your opinion about it? And in particular how do you conceive the

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visual unity and narrative for your works?

Generally art in postmodern times has no easy way to get to the viewer. Peaple change, times change, technology changed it all, also the way we live: fast - faster, cheap - cheaper, consumptionism over good education… all those things made humans got lost in my opinion. What to believe in? Who do we trust? No time to even think about it. Since I was I child I felt everything around me is going to fast. I am very slow person and I like to look at things from the distance because then I can get clear image. This is how I see it - we live in a such a way that doesn’t allow most people to relax and focus on things that really matter. There are too many things around us for example: colorful commercials on walls, newspapers, in television. Many symbols are just overused and they have lost their prior power and meaning. Nobody sees them in this crowd. I would even call it a visual mess. What works in that environment are elements of persuasion, also used in commercials - not without a reason. If people don’t know what they want, they would be more likely to listen to „good advices” or „touching stories”. What govern nowadays are emotions rather than a clear mind. When it comes to my works I don’t prefer to use narration because I want to make the viewer feel something more than understand. This is the aim of my creation process. I was thinking about using symbols but nowadays it’s pointless. Harder part is to find what would work better than them. Every artist finds his/ her way to

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Marta Wapiennik


Marta Wapiennik

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achieve this goal. To be seen. Visual unity is good for series but looking on the whole collection of works that I’ve done so far that wouldn’t be the best way to describe it. It’s important not to be labelled and assigned to some certain modus operandi. You also produce stimulating paintings: while marked out with an intense abstract feature, your recent pieces also convey references to reality and seem to speak of intense struggle. We have really appreciated the consistent balance between such abstract feeling and reminders to perceptual process: how would you describe the relationship between experience and the process of abstraction that marks out your practice?

I am painting because I really love this technique - I use oils on canvas. This gives me much freedom and happiness during the process, you can say that I do it for my own pleasure. When I came back to painting after 3 years of break I wanted to start exploring tha unknown which was for me - abstractionism. I used to paint a lot before but only still life or nudes. They were appreciated works but I didn’t feel good with them. It seemed for me that this is not enough I could give. I truly wanted to break out from this cage of realism. As I was working on my diploma in screenprinting, focused on art without narration, I had the opportunity to rethink the ideas concerning creation that I used to follow previous years. That was very stimulating time for my mind.

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Your paintings are quite elaborated and the dialogue established by vivacious colors and abstract texture is a crucial part of your style: in particular, the effective combination between intense nuances of tones sums up the mixture of thoughts and emotions. How much does your own psychological make-up determine the nuances of tones you decide to use in a piece and in particular, how do you develop a painting’s texture? Moreover, any comments on your choice of "palette" and how it has changed over time?

Interesting question. To be honest I started with only gray tones, that was 10 years ago. I think I was afraid of color, I didn’t know how to use it, how it all worked on canvas so I preferred to stay safe. They were nice works but they looked like from XIX century because I used too much oil and I didn’t clean my brush properly so they even get darker with time. Seems funny now. I knew that this wasn’t going anywhere and I needed change. I worked hard and I had a good teacher before my studies - painter Agnieszka Sajda (runs Salwatorskie Artistic Studio with Filip Konieczny in Cracow) who had the patience and believed in everyone. With her support I managed to evolve grom gray to nice monochromatic pastel tones, still delicate but it was huge progress back then. As work with canvas was getting better I managed to got to the Academy with high scores for my exam painting. And that was the best I did at Matejko’s building. Something bad started to happen since I became a student a spirit died. Especially after one proffesor told me that there is

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Marta Wapiennik

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Adapt

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Adapt

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Marta Wapiennik


Marta Wapiennik

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no need for me to explore color because I am doing so well in gray and monochrome. I have lost my power, changed workshop but the general atmosphere was not pushing me to work on myself or develop anything. With other circumstances mentioned before in interview I was not able to paint at all to I did only the little just to pass examination. I was depressed but maybe that’s why I am so lucky now to create what I have always wanted. I feel like I am putting all my heart in my works. Like in photographs I want my pantings to have a nice textures that catch viewer’s eyes. My palette is always the matter of my intuition. I wouldn’t be far from the truth if I said that sometimes I am surprised by the outcome of mixing colors. I use many different objects to transfer the paint on canvas, almost never brush. I just got bored with it. I seek out for new marks to provoke, raise curiosity and engage more. I don’t use any thinner anymore, after many years of living in the terpentine’s fumes I got allegric to it and I can’t stand the smell. Moreover I like the texture of oil paint itself and working with it is fantastic. This is perfect tool to express myself through colors and all the nuances you mentioned. Does it show my personality? Maybe it shows my everyday struggle. I find it hard to balance myself and there’s a big conflict under the surface. I make art because I must get rid of the overflow of emotions and thoughts. It can be said that they combine images in my mind that I am trying to recreate on canvas. The viewer can imbibe this energy.

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Over these years your works have been internationally exhibited and you are going to take part to Pre-During-Post Contemporary at the Bayer Gallery, in Stara Zagora. One of the hallmarks of your practice is the capability to create a direct involvement with the viewers, who are urged to evolve from a condition of mere spectatorship. So before leaving this conversation we would like to pose a question about the nature of the relationship of your art with your audience. Do you consider the issue of audience reception as being a crucial component of your decisionmaking process, in terms of what type of language is used in a particular context?

Before entering the world of art I read a lot about it. Among many important notes I made, one was that the good artists always talk as a voice of their generation. I carefully listen and observe what are current issues, what seems to be the main problem among the people. Sometimes it shows in my works. I suppose this is the reason you were interested in series „The illusion of reality”. It speaks about the times we live in. Works with lack of common sense are not available, not possible to understand or translate. On the other side too much narration creates many fake assumptions, thesis, there is no place for such things nowadays. What is crucial for me? I would say to address simple, strong, straight messages that as many people comprehend, digest as possible. Thanks a lot for your time and for sharing your thoughts, Marta. Finally, would you like to tell us readers

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something about your future projects? How do you see your work evolving?

I am enjoying painting a lot so I will definitely continue to explore this area. I think I’ll only take bigger canvas. I miss drawing with coal so maybe getting back to this might be a good idea. Recently I’ve been wondering what it would be like to work with textiles and create some nice structures. Also making a short video with sound seems tempting. I am switching from one project to another before even making any decision - as you previosly noticed - I like to plan. So now I am searching for something, My work evolves in a direction that is impossible to predict. It depends on what will happen in my life. People I meet sometimes inspire me to do new things. For example I’m collaborating with USA illustrator and Pratt Institute professor Cheryl Gross on a project „Freak Show” that is a mix of her illustration and my photos. You can find a digital version of our book on my website. We are looking for a publisher, maybe thanks to this opportunity you gave me to talk about my work somebody will notice us. Hoping for it. Future seems to be interesting so please stay tuned. Thank you very much for the interview!

An interview by Josh Ryder, curator and Barbara Scott, curator articulaction@post.com


Marta Wapiennik

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Fiona Weir


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Fiona Weir An interview by Josh Ryder, curator and Barbara Scott, curator articulaction@post.com

Rotterdam based visual artist Fiona Weir explores the aesthetics of normality and reality in her work to draw the viewers into a cool and composed experience. In Chez Madame Cheval – Le Spectacle du Palais IdÊal that we'll be discussing in the following pages, she urges the viewers to extract a narrative from the image she captured, to challenge their perceptual categories. Her approach encapsulates both traditional heritage and unconventional sensitiveness and allows her to produce pieces marked out with a strong reference to contemporariness. One of the most impressive aspects of Weir's work is the way it provides the apparent staticity of an image with autonomous life and aesthetics: we are very pleased to introduce our readers to her stimulating and broad artistic production. Hello Fiona and welcome to ARTiculAction: we would start this interview with a couple of questions about your rich and wide-ranging background. You started your journey into photography at the age of fourteen and you have a solid training: after having graduated from the Royal Academy of Fine Arts, The Hague, you nurtured your education with an MA of Fine Arts, that you received from the Piet Zwart Institute, Rotterdam. How do these experiences influence the way you conceive and produce your works?

Photographing in the beginning gave me a sense of belonging, it felt real and normal. With a simple instrument I was documenting my

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Fiona Weir

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Torche nue de Salagou

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Passage bound


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Stair bound

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Fiona Weir


Fiona Weir

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surroundings. In The Hague, photography became a tool to research material, patterns and structures for my drawings. Whilst going on with my studies in Rotterdam I stopped drawing and found that the photographic image had sublayers and perspectives I hadn't realized before. I started to develop an interest for photography more and played with the appearance of existing settings. The rules around photography were ignored and the possibilities were endless. The thin fine line between appearing and disappearing from view and the investigation to understand a place through a photograph (or a sequence) better than through real life intrigued me. And in particular, how does your cultural substratum inform the way you relate yourself to art making and to the aesthetic problem in general? With a certain naif approach I wilfully play on the general distrust of the photographic image, it being a 'depiction of reality' and not of reality itself. A residue of a captured moment of reality is a more likely assumption. With this in mind, I question our observation, our surveillance, our view but I do not provide ready-made answers. As a maker, a spectator and an outsider of my own work... my work is a document, an aesthetic object, a simulacrum and a work of fiction. The language you convey in your works is the result of a constant evolution of your searching for new means to express the ideas you explore in your works: your inquiry into the expressive potential of photography are combined with figurative as subtle abstract features into a coherent balance. We would suggest to our readers to visit http://www.fionaweir.com in order to get a synoptic view of your work:

in the meantime, would you like to tell to our

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readers something about your process and set up? Fuelled by a sense of wonder and a need to discover, I search for images I don't know about until I stumble upon them. Without really thinking, hurried and uncontrolled, almost unaware of the place itself when I take the picture. It is later that I inquire what is behind or beyond of what is depicted in the image. The stillness in the work seems suspended and unhurried; resigned and secluded from its original condition. Withdrawn from their frontal appearance, the pictures propose to look differently and offer a potential for a hidden narrative. The locations photographed are reloaded, ready for a new reality to occur. In defining and determining what will be seen, I control the experience of a place. In particular, would you tell our readers something about the evolution of your style? Over the years I have assembled an extensive collection of images. This collection is revisited and a source for new images; I use, re-use, rearrange and rework them (take pictures of pictures, zoom in, film, make sequences, intensify, shoot in my own shadow, use film past its expiration date, make collages, etc...). The end results are never really fixed and shift from raw images to appealing aesthetic photographs. For this special edition of ARTiculAction we have selected Chez Madame Cheval – Le Spectacle du Palais IdÊal a piece that our readers have already started to get to know in the introductory pages of this article. What has at once captured our attention of your work is its dynamic and autonomous aesthetics: in particular, it seems to communicate a successful attempt to transform tension to harmony, and it's really captivating. While walking our readers through the genesis of this piece, would you shed light on your usual process and your sources of inspiration?

Concerning the pressures of moments slipping away and the static image?

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Fiona Weir

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The canvas plunge

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A tree way

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Fiona Weir


Fiona Weir

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A single photograph should be able to stand alone, capture a wholeness that leans towards fiction and suggest an irrelevance of time, or of existence itself, and is separated from its physical space. It is where the photograph presents an image that is filmic, theatrical or performative that transcends the particular and the peculiar and has the ability to last and remain in ones' mind. Space, tranquillity, unwinding at a monument site, un-animated, a derisive look on life and death gives an existentialist tone to my work in general. The theme of landscape is very recurrent in your imagery and it never plays the role of a mere background: you rather seem to address to viewers to extract a narrative behind the images you select, to establish direct relations with the spectatorship: this is a quite repeated aspect of your works and you encapsulate evocative elements from Traditional imagery, as you did in Stair bound and Passage bound. German multidisciplinary artist Thomas Demand once stated that "nowadays art can no longer rely so much on symbolic strategies and has to probe psychological, narrative elements within the medium instead". How would you describe the function of the evocative places you select from landscapes?

Captured by space and the sympathy for a place, seeing and experiencing something else, I try to reach the soul of a place. Hidden clues unravel a past, a present and perhaps a far future. The works evoke a world submerged in murky earth tones and patches of darkness. A pending and unresolved mystery is presented that is paired with a slightly uncomfortable beauty and touches the relentless passing of time. The image is an homage to a place without defining its location or nature. It seems to come out of this darkness, shadows left and

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Cone ville


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Cropland

right block from viewing properly, encouraging the viewer to step into the image and take a closer look. What is behind or what is in front of the image? What appears on screen and what has disappeared from the visual field? The idea that something else might have been in front of the lens whilst taking the picture is debatable... Perhaps when looking one should turn around and see what's behind instead of loosing oneself in the view that is in front of them? You accomplish the difficult task of controlling the experience of place and as

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you have remarked once, Photography and Film are for you a means to explore the aesthetics of normality and reality. In particular, the equilibrium concerning the composition of your works gives them a permanence to the intrinsic ephemeral nature of the images that you capture. So we would take this occasion to ask you if in your opinion personal experience is an absolutely indispensable part of a creative process... (here we have reserved space for The canvas plunge and The tree way that you could mention in your answer as well) Do you think that a creative process could be disconnected from direct experience?

Conscious and unconscious awareness is


Fiona Weir

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Les grands bois

part of the decision-making process but the direct experience isn't always necessary for a creative process: Canvas plunge was my father's experience in the 60's. I re-experienced it by reproducing the image and claiming it. Perhaps in this case it becomes indirectly a direct experience? The Tree Way is the experience of an old almost dead tree that has withstood wars and storms and is the sole reliable witness of a small country road.

late Franz West did in his installations, your work shows unconventional features in the way it deconstructs perceptual processes in order to assemble them in a collective imagery, urging the viewers to a process of selfreflection. Artists are always interested in probing to see what is beneath the surface: maybe one of the roles of an artist could be to reveal unexpected sides of Nature, especially of our inner Nature... what's your view about this?

Today your playground covers a sympathy for indefinite places: as the

Overcharged with a reality of a place, I seem to erase the surplus of information in

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Manoir


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Shadow field

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Fiona Weir


Fiona Weir

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the image that ties a scene to a traceable reality, rendering the visible in a state of uncertainty and uneasiness. The after image of a dream or a film assures us of something familiar. Torche nue de Salagou a nightly beachfront with a man trying to relate to his environment..., and simmering under the surface of a sun soaked cornfield lies another truth, Cropland. Both, are places where people have set foot in a remote landscape with a slow, indifferent, unchanging static nature. They are suggestive and inviting to the roving eye and the lively mind. When developing a multilayered language, you capture non-sharpness and bring to a new level of significance the elusive still ubiquitous relationship between experience and memory. What is the role of memory in your process?

The images grasped are swift, made to suggest another image, an image that occurs in the corner of the eye of an unknown individual, and recalls a sense of recognition and becomes owner of a particular history and a peculiar memory. Manoir a stately residence, Les grands bois with trees obstructing a passage and the trees in Tree line mark a boundary that addresses 'forbidden' territories... Eery shadows trigger (inaccurate) memory and 'micro' stories rise. Over these years you have exhibited your works in several occasions, including your recent participation at the Day / Night / Day at Galerie Zic Zerp, in Rotterdam: one of the hallmarks of your work is the capability to create a direct involvement with the viewers, who are urged to evolve from a condition of mere spectatorship. So before leaving this conversation we would like to pose a question about the nature of

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the relationship of your art with your audience. Do you consider the issue of audience reception as being a crucial component of your decision-making process, in terms of what type of language is used in a particular context?

To experience a sensation of the reality of a place, an elevated sense of its reality is etched sharply into the image, to draw the viewer in. The doubt, the longing, and pursuit of the maker is a part of that process and enters our view. As a stranger, an outsider, letting go of what is safe or known there is a new world waiting to be received and perceived. As visual interpretations and propositions for reinterpretation, the work makes us doubt about the accuracy behind the image. The logic is not to fool or to be wronged by the image but to preserve and reserve a place. The moment and reason to bring forward a work that fits audience, role and place is quite crucial indeed. It is a slow process, a training for consciousness. In the end what matters are choices about place, angle, framework, exposure, film, size... Thanks a lot for your time and for sharing your thoughts, Fiona. Finally, would you like to tell us readers something about your future projects? How do you see your work evolving?

The search to find a certain depth and quality in image-making continues. A photo-film book with the attempt to capture unconscious recollections of inbetween moments and ordinary places to unravel what is behind the photographed scenes could be something happening in the very near future. And, the wonderment for place remains, expands.

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Fiona Weir

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Un balcon en forêt

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think many of artists are not good at talking. Therefore, they try to express themselves through art. Using their art work to tell a story, to describe a feeling and sometimes this way can reach the exquisite level which is hard to be achieved a words. Expressing motion by art can get more close to the truth and emotion. I am that kind of person who is not good at reading and writing . I always meet the situation of hard to share my feeling with other people. But now, I can express all my feelings through painting comfortably and by photography, I can catch those touching details which might not describe easily by words.

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Wasabi Chuang


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Wasabi Chuang An interview by Josh Ryder, curator and Melissa C. Hilborn, curator articulaction@post.com

Exploring the evokative potential of universal imagery, artist Wasabi Chuang accomplishes an insightful exploration of the expressive potentia of abstract shapes and intense nuance of tones. One of the most convincing aspects of Chuang's work is the way it creates an area of vivid interplay between memory and perception, inviting the viewers to explore the unstable relationship between human intervention and freedom in the contemporary age. We are very pleased to introduce our readers to his stimulating artistic production. Hello Wasabi, and a warm welcome to ARTiculAction.

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We would start this interview posing you some questions about your background: what among your experiences have mostly influenced your evolution as an artist? And in particular, how does your cultural substratum inform the way you relate yourself to art making and to the aesthetic problem in general?

I had never dreamed to be an artist. When I was little, I dreamed to be an actress or a dessert chef. The situation has been changed when I was enrolled in a design academy rather than dessert academy in the test of collage enrollment. That is my first moment to get in touch with art. After then, my first painting in my life was complimented by the


A blue Sunday with good mood photo


Be a CCTV photo


Wasabi Chuang

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teachers at that time and the drawing also been exhibited in the art gallery. Since then the small satisfaction made me feel fantastic and lead me to a different world. I think I felt in love with art creation and the feeling of seeing the world and life with art. Sometimes, I would say It’s an accident to make people entered their career. Of course not everything goes well in the beginning of entering the field of art. My family at that time did not have too much good impression of artists. Especially when artist is often been categorized in the group of insteady life stereotype. Therefore, I made my decision to leave my home country to western country. Luckily, when I returned to my home country afterwards, people have started to recognize the art career. However, my family still held conservative atitude to my art creations. They cannot accept

naked body in my art pieces. For instance, I had some human body portraits when I was in school in Italy and I even felt guilty with the fear of presenting my art work to them. In the end, I threw all my art pieces regarding body in the airport. Since then, I spent years to think about this issue. “How should I see the body which I think is beautiful?” I felt myself hilarious and noticed that I am deeply involved in this oldschool thought effect. I realized we were all born naked and when we put on our clothes, “naked body” became something we are able to see only when we are adult who is over 18 years old. How could this be? Until recently, I try to start over again on drawing human body and taking picture of human body. Now, I see human body without feeling shame or guilty. I am sure that my cultural background had made me to have some kind of

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Time project photos

boundness to know myself when I am going to be old.

about your process and set up?

You are a versatile artist and your approach reveals an incessant search of an organic symbiosis between a variety of viewpoints. The results convey together a coherent sense of unity, that rejects any conventional classification. Before starting to elaborate about your production, would you like to tell to our readers something

As everyone has their own and unique personality, without doubt that the things they do or the words they say will empower with different styles. Only if not to mimic from each other, the characters from authors will represent through their artworks no matter the materials of the art pieces.

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Wasabi Chuang

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For this special issue of ARTiculAction we have selected Madness and Rush, a couple of stimulating works from yours that our readers have already stared to get to know in the introductory pages of this article. What has at once caught our attention of these pieces is the way they accomplishes the difficult task of creating an harmonic mix between a figurative approach and a refined absract sebsitiveness: when walking our readers

through the genesis of Madness and Rush, would you shed a light about your main sources of inspiration?

“Madness” is originating from the extremely emotional expression. That was the time that I made up my mind to develop myself toward the direction of art. I was obviously againt the my family’s expectation. During that period, we were fighting and disputing with each other.

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This painting was one of the paintings I drew after I decided to leave home to study in Italy. “Rush� is the photo shooting work for the semester end in Italy. It was inspired by an old men who rode on the bicycle while exhaled as he is going to be dead at the moment. I had followed him and shooted photos for him. I also wrote him the story about going to be dead. In fact, he might still alive now. However, the answer will never been answered anymore. Your work convey both metaphoric and descriptive research that invites the viewers to a multilayered experience. In particular, we have appreciated the way you convey emotions to create a concrete aesthetic, working on both subconscious and conscious level. So we would take this occasion to ask you if in your opinion, personal experience is absolutely indispensable as part of the

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Die beautifully mixed photo

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Wasabi Chuang

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creative process? Do you think that a creative process could be disconnected from direct experience?

I would say that there are not much connections between art creation and memory. After all, most of my artworks are representing the status of combination with imagination and illusion. Although when I want to draw an apple, it will present as the look in my memory which is red surface with few uneven yellow. But sometimes, I might draw an apple which has none relation with the outlook in memory. It will actually shows different image of an apple just as the memory with the addressing of emotion at that moment or with the feeling while I am listening to a song. The fruible set of elements you draw from universal imagery trigger the viewers' primordial parameters concerning our relation with physicality: as Gerhard Richter once remarked, "my

concern is never art, but always what art can be used for": what is your opinion about the functional aspect of Art in the contemporary age?

If you see something nice looking but useless in my room, that will be artpieces. Even it is a plastic bag on the ground, it can be the artwork which is inspired from quite noices while I woke up in my room or the art piece which concludes the inspiration when I bumped into a stranger and the feeling trigered by him. The dialogue established by stimulating nuances of tones is a crucial part of your style and in particular, the effective combination between both delicate and intense nuances of colors sums up the mixture of thoughts and emotions. How much does your own psychological make-up determine the nuances of tones you decide to use in a

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Moonman acrylic painting + adobe

piece and in particular, how do you develop a painting’s texture? Moreover, any comments on your choice of "palette" and how it has changed over time?

I think choosing colors on the plate is similar with the feeling when you want to tell a story to other people. Just as the way you want to use what kind of emotion and the

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attitude to give the expression of the story. Your works encapsulate several techniques: in particular are there any constraints or rules that you follow when creating your works?

For now, I keep an open mind to explore new materials and


Wasabi Chuang

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new ways of expression for my art. We definitely love the way your approach goes beyond a merely interpretative aspect of the contexts you refer to: although you draw inspiration from outside reality, your works could be considered as tactile biographies of the conflictual symbiosis between

perception and imagination. As the late Franz West did in his installations, your pieces show unconventional aesthetics in the way it deconstructs perceptual images in order to assemble them in a collective imagery, urging the viewers to a process of self-reflection. Artists are always interested in probing to see what is beneath the surface: maybe

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Photo project - invisible city (a city underwater) mixed photo

one of the roles of an artist could be to reveal unexpected sides of Nature, especially of our inner Nature... what's your view about this?

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I can clearly remember the inspiration for my first art creation. It was the time I went water- diving and accidently to find out a huge grassland just under the sea.


Wasabi Chuang

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conserve and make use of those fantastic colors. Since then, I can feel myself had been turned on. I become sharved and sensitive on not only nature, but also on human beings and the surroundings of life. I was totally attracted. I felt in love with documented things in my life. But, I have no idea how to use camera or painting at the beginning. All I did was to use words to write them down. I often spent whole day at home and slow myself down to think for details or spent whole month on the roads at will to feel the interrelations and relations with people. Sometimes, I stayed alone and lived in mountains with those insects, animals, rocks, grasses, numerous stars on the sky and tiny rivers. It was deeply dragging me in. The color from the deep sea had empowered me with enormous touching. That was the first time of feeling thirsty for creation art. I crave to

One of the hallmarks of your projects is strictly connected to the chance of establishing a direct involvement with the viewers, who are called to

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evolve from a mere spectatorship to conscious participants on an intellectual level, so before leaving this conversation I would like to pose a question about the nature of the relationship of your art with your audience. Do you consider the issue of audience reception as being a crucial component of your decision-making process, in terms of what type of language is used in a particular context? I think I wouldn’t take audience as my first priority when I am working on my art work. If I draw a leg but my audience regard it as a hand then I will say it is a hand. For me, that’spart of the truth. Everyone can have their preference and their own logic way of understanding pictures. Just like selected paintings’ in the museum. Not every visitor wll adore every painting and even try to understand them. Madness_1 acrylic

Thanks a lot for your time and for sharing your thoughts, Wasabi. Finally,

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would you like to tell us


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readers something about your future projects. How do you see your work evolving?

For the next few years, I would try to film some short films and to find a new way to convey ideas. I want to use

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these years to put emphasize on “People”. I am always curious on people who have outstanding characters. I consider myself grew up in a dramatic family. My family’s characters are prominent and sometimes those characters will make people feel weird and strange. Take my mom for instance, she is that kind of person who is crazy about feeling safety. Nothing can arouse her attention. The most interested thing for her is to sit on the sofa and spy the world from her monitor. She can spend whole day on watching and spying. All the detailed things such as watching her neighbor or how many dogs have passed by. She knows well on these little things and loves to know everything but without presence. For me, it’s interesting as watching a movie. Let me want to record them down Before this summer, I went to Portugal for traveling. One

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day, I was on the train and the train just passed by the forest. I saw a drawf with one eye and he is standing next to a tree in the woods. I also saw a fox is passing through the wood. However, it stopped moving and stared at me. While passing through those empty and abandoned towns, the train still stop for short period. But whenever the door opened, I felt the room in the train is decreasing. At night, I arrived in a small town. I saw a blind man was walk down the stairs without the help of crutch. People there like to talk out loud and women are with plump body shape. The plump shape is kind of shape which is not civilized yet. That trip has inspired me a lots and I haven’t get to what exact is the inspiration. So I would like to take next few years to digest. An interview by Josh Ryder, curator and Melissa C. Hilborn, curator articulaction@post.com


Photo project - invisible city (a entrance of a city) mixed photo


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H adas Friedland Hayun Lives and works in Tel Aviv, Israel

An artist's statement

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believe in art and i believe in design, and one of my goals is to break the barrier between them and to create something complete and full of beauty, that may be used as a picture on a gallery wall or a printed dress. The image in both cases will be the same. my activity is based on observation of the nature. The natural elements around me, such as flowers in vases and trees at my window are inspiring and interesting me. Through my work also explore the images of nature that already exist -such as botanical illustrations from old encyclopedias and nature books. i try to respond to it and to find an original, yet somehow classic ways to, express my way of seeing. Im very interested in flemish art, still life painting and science illustrations. This is the foundation of my artistic

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activity. Another sphere that I'm explore in my work is the material. The paper or fabric using to create my images, and the cultural or fiscal values this material represents The silk paper for instance is very delicate, and has to be dealt tenderly. I must be precise and delicate at the same time because once I've touched the paper there is no way back. The final product is a fragile object. In embroidery, from the other hand, the fabric is forgiving and the working process is different. in concludetios, my main concern as an artist is the observation of nature, of natural images, and the process of reacting what I see and cherish.

Hadas Friedland Hayun


textile desing for fashion designer Yosef Peretz, for the brand YOSEF. photography: Zohar Shitrit model: Yoshevah Jones


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Multidisciplinary artist Hadas Friedland Hayun's explore the expressive potential of a variety of materials to investigate about natural elements. Her works are pervaded with a subtle but effective narrative that reflects her observation of the nature, to bring to a new level of significance the notion of rapresentation. What mostly impressed of Hayun's practice is the way it accomplishes the difficut task of breaking the barrier between Art and Design, unveiling subtle connections between art producing and audience's reception. We are particularly pleased to introduce our readers to her multifaceted artistic production. Hello Hadas and welcome to ARTiculAction: to start this interview, we would like to pose you a question about your background. You have a solid formal training and you graduated from the prestigious Bezalel Academy of Art and Design: how does this experience influence your evolution as an artist? In particular, how does your cultural substratum inform the way you relate yourself to art making and to the aesthetic problem in general?

The Cultural environment which I grew

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up in, is an interesting environment with a unique aesthetic. You could say that I enjoy the area I live in, the good things in it. I love the local vegetation, the language, the sun, and the cultural mix I'm a part of. Of course you cannot ignore the fact that this conflicted land is also full of problems, some of which occupy a part of daily life that may be discouraging or depressing. My art is optimistic, sometimes escapist. I believe paintings of flowers and nature are relevant everywhere and at all times, each time they carry a different cargo. In my case they carry the charges of where I live. Bezalel Academy contributed greatly to my artistic development, as it directs to make design per se. Sometimes being within a rigid framework which educates the aesthetics of a particular type, is helping to create a different kind of aesthetic. and that's what happened in my case. You are a versatile artist: ranging from painting to textile and embroidery, your approach reveals a stimulating search of an organic symbiosis between a variety of viewpoints. The results convey together a coherent sense of unity, that rejects any conventional classification. Before starting to elaborate about your


Hadas Friedland Hayun photo by Misha Kaminsky


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production, we would suggest to our readers to visit http://cargocollective.com/hadasfriedl andhayun in order to get a synoptic view of your multifaceted artistic production: while walking our readers through your process, we would like to ask you if you have ever happened to realize that such approach is the only way to express and convey the idea you explore?

Thank you for your acuity. The short answer is absolutely yes. I feel that there is no clear boundaries between art and design, or the creation of textile painting. I mix between things and doing all that because in my mind they are one. My goal is to create a wide range body of work that will deliver this approach in a simple manner. For this special issue of ARTiculAction we have selected Until the Fingers Begin to Bleed a Bit and Thoughts about Nicolai Gogol, a couple of stimulating works that our readers have already started to get to know in the introductory pages of this article. What has at once caught our attention of these works is the way they create an harmonic mix between a vivid approach to the evokative reminders conveyed by the materials you combine together: when walking our readers through the genesis of these pieces would you shed a light about the role of metaphors in your process?

In my work Until€the€Fingers Begin to Bleed€a Bit the metaphor is almost transparent. The painting is of flowers, idyllic greenery and colorful birds, and

text that says- till fingers start to bleed. If I have to write a line of explanation for this job, I would say - I will continue to paint these images until I couldn't do this anymore- till the fingers will begin to bleed from painting, till the pessimism defeat me, until the war that is outside will enter into my house. This line is loaned from a poem by Charles Bukowski. This exceptional work for me because it has one message and its clear. in the other hand, the work "Gogol" is simply a collection Thoughts of my favorite stories by Gogol. As you have remarked once, you are very interested in Flemish art, still life painting and science illustrations: your works invite the viewers to a multilayered experience and the way you explore the ambivalent relation between the intrinsically ephemeral and fragile nature of paper and the sense of permanence accomplishes the difficult task of constructing a concrete aesthetic from experience, working on both subconscious and conscious level. So we would take this occasion to ask you if in your opinion personal experience is absolutely indispensable as part of the creative process? Do you think that a creative process could be disconnected from direct experience?

Personal experience occurs in all sorts of levels. reading the works of Gogol is my personal experience, even though I did not live in the reality it depicts. This is actually an experience in my imagination, and it is personal as much as

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going to buy flowers in the shops of tel aviv , but different. Therefore, I believe personal experience is important, but it is not necessary for it to be a part of

my biography or my physical environment. The 'insect tissues' created from my deep interest and a browse in nature encyclopedias, not from a physical

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encounter with one insect or another.

the plants that are in my house, and

The effects which result in the creation

this is a personal and fully conscious

process can be conscious (I am cur-

process) and unconscious. I think it's a

rently working on documentation of all

good thing that it works both ways.

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The dialogue established by colors and texture is a crucial part of your style: in particular, the effective combination between both delicate and thoughtful nuances of tones sums up

the mixture of thoughts and emotions. How much does your own psychological make-up determine the nuances of tones you decide to use in a piece and in particular, how do you develop a

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painting’s texture? Moreover, any comments on your choice of "palette" and how it has changed over time?

and my life. I like to create color com-

Color is a key component in my work,

have a passion to one color or another.

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binations to convey a feeling or atmosphere, but beyond that, sometimes I


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Anyone who looks at my work can conclude that I love pink and I cannot explain why. For me, It Is related to optimism, serenity and beauty; but for a different person, a different color will express those feelings. As I illustrator textile and involved in the fashion industry, some of my pieces have a pink element. many of my works also include the color 'Lemon yellow'. I was asked to use it in my textile design job, and it became a part of my personal work. Your approach condenses both traditional techniques and contemporary sensitiveness and your works are pervaded with an effective narrative, that draws the viewers into an immersive experience. German multidisciplinary artist Thomas Demand once stated that "nowadays art can no longer rely so much on symbolic strategies and has to probe psychological, narrative elements within the medium instead". What is your opinion about it? And in particular how do you conceive the narrative and especially the visual unity for your works?

I avoid almost completely to convey an unequivocal message, or a symbol, or to bring the viewer to a particular conclusion. I agree with the argument that today the psychological narrative leads the artistic processes, however I'd like to point out that for me the 'narrative' is not an arranged story. The narrative is broken and fragmented, a stream of consciousness, and that's why it does not come to symbolize or announce

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anything. In painting, reading or writing prose, I am drawn to the broken narrative. As the late Franz West did in his installations, your work shows unconventional features in the way it deconstructs perceptual images in


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order to assemble them in a collective imagery, urging the viewers to a process of self-reflection. Artists are always interested in probing to see what is beneath the surface: maybe one of the roles of an artist could be to reveal unexpected sides of Nature, especially of our inner

I couldn't agree more. The more I explore and produce images of nature, I understand that I also generate a selfportrait. The series I'm working on right now called DOMASTIC FOREST, where I draw the plants inside my home, as a large and dense jungle. Of course, My internal forest is not only in my appart-

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ment, but also in me. Forest has many forms and moods and there is nothing like it to simulate the human condition. Your practice shows freedom of composition that reveals an insightful attention to contemporary sensitiveness: how would you describe the relation-

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ship between Tradition and Contemporariness in your works? Do you think that there's still a dichotomy between such apparently different aspects of art?

Some say that the use of traditional techniques, Kraft sexuality is a thing of


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the past and does not belong to modern art. For me, when I came to create not only relies on past those artists I admire, but also the roots and the first jobs I learned to deal with them. I mean sewing, embroidery and so on. These crafts I learned when I was ten years old mother of a company, and dealing in them is one of my most valuable assets. Not only are they a loved material, they also bear shape cultural baggage. One of the hallmarks of your works is the capability to establish direct relation with the audience, deleting any conventional barrier between the idea you explore and who receipt and consequently elaborate them. So before taking leave from this interesting conversation I would like to pose a question about the nature of the relation with your audience: in particular, do you consider the issue of audience reception as being a crucial component of your decision-making process in terms of what type of language for a particular context?

The question of crowd doesn't occupy my mind frequently. However, it is important for me that my work will be beautiful - it's one of the things that I feel responsible to do- to increase Beauty. So, I guess the Enjoyment of the beholder is more important for me than challenging him. One of the masters of which I am inspired and powered by is Henri Matisse, and with it the flow fauvism. Matisse described his ideal art as a "Comfortable armchair" for the viewer,

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and I agree with this definition. If the message is too complicated, or there is a broken and twisted narrative behind the piece, its beauty and the vitality should come first. This is the responsibility I feel obligated to as someone who adds imagery to a world. However, it is important to me that my work will be beautiful - it's one of the things that I feel a responsibility to do. Beauty increase. So, I guess the enjoyment of watching important to me than challenging it. One of the masters of which I am inspired and power is Henri Matisse, and with it the flow fauvism. Thanks a lot for your time and for sharing your thoughts, Hadas: would you like to tell us readers something about your future projects? How do you see your work evolving?

Thank you for a closer look at my work. In the future I plan to expand research on local plants close to me, and the cultural attitude towards it. As a wish, I would like to travel and paint in various countries in the Middle East and look its existing cultural aesthetics, greenery and textures; To try and see the points similar aesthetics, and the differences. Of course I would be also happy to collaborate with artists from those countries. An interview by Dario Rutigliano, curator and Barbara Scott, curator articulaction@post.com


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P eng Yi Hang Lives and works in Taipei

An artist's statement

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his series originates from my life in Taiwan – a melting pot of cultural elements. Growing up surrounded by a unique fondness for fusion, plus a background in design, I am deeply drawn to items that have only aesthetic values and those that have only practical functions. Thus began my search for objects like these that are already present, which gave rise to my awareness of the relationship between humans, objects, and society. Creations that exist to beautify landscapes invade our lives, in the states of the present and absent, the natural and the unnatural, to construct a wondrous city atmosphere. People are now used to the illusion of the fake in the place of the real. Decision-makers and enforcers consciously create fantastical products

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that have only decorative-worth but lack functionality, under the so-called name of “art”. These products are seemingly just in existence to please the people or people in power, forming a societal landscape that is unique to the city, while making visual the city’s modernisation. These images isolate the creations to present a state of disconnection between the scenery and the society, the ironic phenomenon of times. The thoughts that transpire upon the viewing of the series and the neutral existence of the landscapes are combined to allow the exploration of the relationship between humans and society, creations and art.

Peng Yi Hang


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have these experiences influenced your evolution as an artist? And in particular, how does your cultural substratum dued to your life in a melting pot of such a wide variety of cultural elements as Taiwan inform the way you relate yourself to artmaking and to the aesthetic problem in general?

Investigating about the relationship between identity and hybridization, Peng Yi Hang's work rejects any conventional classification and accomplishes a consistent synergy between conceptual photography and contemporary sensitiveness to extract a compelling narrative that draws the viewers to a multilayered experience. In his project Artificial Animals that we'll be discussing in the following pages, he examines the relation between the presence and absence of the pseudoreal, between the natural and unnatural, walking us into an area in which the perceptual dimension and subconscious sphere merges together into coherent unity. One of the most convincing aspects of Hang's work is his successful attempt to draw the viewer's attention to real situations in which we all might take part and reflect aspects of our unstable and ever changing societies: we are very pleased to introduce our readers to his multifaceted artistic production.

To me, a formal training in design and photography is but technical in nature – my true interest lies really in what I can do with these skills. Photography is not about what it captures, but is about what it story it tells. Technical skills are then simply what allows the work to reach a greater standard in quality.

Hello Peng, and a warm welcome to ARTiculAction: we would start this interview posing you a couple of questions about your background. You have a solid formal training: you studied at the Shih Chien University Multimedia Design and you worked as a Assistant photographer and Project planner. How

Growing up in Taiwan, my awareness about the theory of colours and the concept of design was simply lacking, because the appreciation of aesthetics has not been adequately emphasized in our education system. And it definitely did not help that I was in a rather

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My background in design has had a huge influence on my artistic works. While both are based on the fundamental objective of problem-solving, an apparent difference between the two remains. Design resolves problems of the others, while art resolves the problems of its’ creators. Rather than merely creating solutions for others, I prefer using a designer’s the thought process to create works of art that narrate what I observe and what I would like to say.


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Peng Yi Hang

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traditional environment where an item’s value was based purely on the quality of materials it was made with, without attention paid to the concept of complementing forms and styles. The finesse that the item should own is then lost – even after substantial amounts of money were spent to ensure the quality of the goods. I have always found these occurrences to be of a great pity. This is similar to how the wrong policies can cause more damage than corruption, and the only way to make change, is to fix the root of all these – with education. The society needs designers who can create solutions, not artisans who can create problems. You are a versatile artist and your photography-based projects show an organic synergy between a variety of expressive capabilities, to draw the viewers through a multilayered experience. Before starting to elaborate about your production, we would suggest to our readers to visit http://cargocollective.com/theone in order to get a synoptic view of your multifaceted artistic production: while walking our readers through your process, we would like to ask you something about your usual process and set up.

My camera follows me wherever I go, though taking photographs may not necessarily be the intention of every trip I make. I would usually shoot spontaneously while traveling to my destination, but it is also entirely possible that nothing catches my eye – and my camera would then remain untouched throughout the day. In my perspective, creations originate from one’s observations on life, the senses of the physical body, the

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experience of life – travelling alone, savoring delicacies, raising miniature plants, pushing my physical and mental boundaries, the relish of life in every single stage of it. Add these to the innate tendency to over-think – possibly the naturally sensitive personality as a Cancerian boy, my creations very naturally occur. For this special issue of ARTiculAction we have selected Artificial Animals, a stimulating project that our readers have already started to get to know in the introductory pages of this article. What has at once caught our interest of your inquiry into the relationship between creators and art is the way it accomplishes the difficult task of creating a channel of communication between the conscious sphere and the subconscious sphere. When walking our readers through the genesis of Artificial Animals, would you shed a light about the role of metaphors in your process?

With my past experience in advertising design and project planning, I understand very well the creation of each of these public advertisements and installation art pieces from scratch - as such, parts of the ‘Artifical Animals’ series aims to present the irony in governmental efforts to promote the act of creating. These policies lead designers to deliberately creating facades of the interesting, and the wonderful. The products are treated with nonchalance even with its prevalence and close proximity in our everyday lives, and very much, they are the ultimate representation of useless designs in the modern society. The series thus create a platform for one to consider the correlations between an individual and his/her surroundings, as

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well as the relationship between design and art. We have highly appreciated the way Artificial Animals highlights the state of disconnection between the scenery and the society, the ironic phenomenon of times: when investigating about the hybridization between identities and cultures you seem to address the viewers to a subtle but effective socio political criticism in this aspect: but while other artists from the contemporary scene, as Judy Chicago or more recently Jennifer Linton, use to include ope socio-political criticism in their works, you rather seem to hint the direction to the spectatorship, urging them to elaborate personal associations. Do you consider that your works are political in this way or do you seek to maintain a neutral approach? Do you feel that it’s your responsibility as an artist to teach and raise awareness of certain issues?

It is the occurrence of a reality that I wish to present – providing the viewer a space for open-minded thoughts and viewing perspectives. All that I capture in my photographs are entirely existent in real life, without any special setup or manipulation of the subjects. In our country, there is a lot of freedom for expressing personal views. I would much rather take on the role of the one that throws out questions for a discussion to happen for the viewers. A distinctive mark of the way you present the irony of how the human faith is artificially constructed by the humans themselves allows you to construct a concrete aesthetic from experience and memories and symbols that is evident Artificial Animals, so we would take this occasion to ask you if in your opinion, personal experience is absolutely indispensable as part of the

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Reagan Lake


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creative process? In particuar, how woudl you describe the role of memory in your process?

Personal experience is essential – it is where the soul of a content creator lies. In my case, it was the arrival in the buzzing city, Taipei, that really created a contrast to the mountainous regions I grew up in, Hsinchu. That impact felt from modernization was what fuelled my strong interest in it. My creations have never been based on memories, instead they are the results of pure imagination – from observations of everyday events and occurrences, combined to form something logical and relatable. As you have remarked once, you are deeply drawn to items that have only aesthetic values and those that have only practical functions. To quote a wellknown aphorims, a designer’s role is to answer questions; an artist’s role is to formulate them: do you agree with this statement? And in particular, how would you describe the role of Art to inquiry into the interstitial space between aesthetics and everyday life?

I completely agree with you. Aesthetics and art is everywhere – right in our lives. It’s just the matter of whether you realize it, and feel it with your heart. Another interesting project that has particularly impressed us and on which we would like to spend some words is entitled "If There is a Light that Can Illuminate Your Universe", that you have currently exhibited and that our readers can discover at http://cargocollective.com/theone/Univer se. The set of elements you draw from universal imagery trigger the viewers' primordial parameters concerning our relation with physicality: as Gerhard Richter once remarked, "my concern is

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never art, but always what art can be used for": what is your opinion about the functional aspect of Art in the contemporary age?

With its versatility, art is able to serve many functions. For instance, ‘If There Is A Light That Can Illuminate Your Universe’ is a series about selfexploration. Who am I? Where do I come from? Where do I head from here? With photography as a medium for me to converse with myself, being alone with the images give myself a place to ponder over my past, future, all before returning to the present. The ‘Artificial Animals’ series, on the other hand, aims to explore the relationship between the individual and society. In your work you encapsulate both reference to traditional imagery and modern methods you merge together to create a coherent unity, that rejects any conventional classification and that invites the viewer to explore the liminal area between Tradition and a vivacious contemporary approach. What is in your opinion the relationship between Tradition ad Contemporariness? Do you think there's still a contrast or do you rather think that Contemporariness could be considered an evolutive stage of Tradition?

Traditional art emphasizes on beauty, while contemporary art focuses more on the presentation of a concept. Hence, where traditional art is concerned, a single photograph would be sufficient to constitute an art piece. In comparison, modern artists has changed the method of story telling – generally requiring a series of photographs to put forth certain

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concepts in order to explore the depths of issues more comprehensively. From my perspective, photography is more than just the capture of a specific moment – it is a narration. This is why I personally find a photography series more effective in communicating a concept to an audience. Given this, the traditional and the modern can co-exist without any conflicts. Over these years you works have been exhibited in several occasions including your participation at the YOUTH INNOVATIVE DESIGN FESTIVAL, in Kaohsiung. Your work is strictly

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connected to the chance of establishing a direct involvement with the viewers, who are called to evolve from a mere spectatorship to conscious participants on an intellectual level, so before leaving this conversation I would like to pose a question about the nature of the relationship of your art with your audience. Do you consider the issue of audience reception as being a crucial component of your decision-making process, in terms of what type of language is used in a particular context?

Yes, the perspectives of my audiences do come into play in my decision-making process when creating. Art has now


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become an integral part of our society – hence there is a need for it to forge a relationship with the people who live within this city. My decision to photograph scenes that are familiar to our daily lives is a direct way of bringing us closer to our the happenings, showing that art originates from our lives, and anyone has the potential to be part of it. Thanks a lot for your time and for sharing your thoughts, Peng. Finally, would you like to tell us readers something about your future projects. How do you see your work evolving?

In the near future, I will deepen my involvement in the arts that explore matters of the society, making use of occurrences or phenomenon to discuss the irony of mankind. An upcoming photobook about this would be published, please stay tuned!

(Translation by Zoe Fan)

An interview by Josh Ryder, curator and Barbara Scott, curator articulaction@post.com

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ARTiculAction Art Review // Special Issue // Summer 2016  

In this special issue we had the chance to interview Eri Kassnel, Fiona Weir, Wasabi Chuang, Hadas Hayun, PengYu Hang, Lang Ea, Marta Wapien...

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