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Anniversary Edition

Special Issue

AVIV KELLER VIKTOR FUÄŒEK LISA SEBESTIKOVA RACHEL SALIT KAREL BATA RENEE REGAN CHEN YU-JUNG KIMBERLEY BEACH JANNO BERGMANN

Art Makes You (*) Fly installation by Janno Bergmann


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Chen Yu-Jung

Aviv Keller

Lisa Sebestikova

Viktor Fuček

Rachel Salit

Estonia

Taiwan

Israel

The Netherlands

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Israel

Curiosity – this may be overall described as as a qualitative characteristic indeed. This is one of the human conditions just like play, taking risks or let´s say – irrationality. All these things are generally human, known to us and there is nothing to complain about. Humanity is a well-known synonym for human nature. Nevertheless there is a very subtle limit, at which curiosity would contradict humanity and therefore it would surpass the moral categories established in a culture – let us mention such things as philantropy, honesty, benevolence, sympathy, tolerance, altruism and reverence of life.

Spatial textures become a part of sections of memories. Through an ongoing process of colonization, boundaries become blurred. Folded memories influence the paths of people’s perspectives.

My embroidery work is a personal language that I have developed as a result of my search for new means of expression. I regard it as a painting and use the knowledge and tools I have acquired as a realistic painter. The needle takes the role of the paintbrush and the threads are used as the paint itself. Each work takes months to complete. My subject matters are urban landscapes that I choose from photos I take. The images are transferred onto the canvas with a meticulous drawing. Once the image is laid out on the fabric the embroidery work starts. While I try to stick with the original image I also take it into a new, more liberated expressive realm.

As an artist I constantly question familiar elements, for example, a house or a wall. When I encounter everyday items, I have this urge to rediscover both their tangible and intangible characteristics. Familiar objects evoke reflexive and unconscious thoughts in any observer – it's what makes them familiar. To get to the core of these objects, I separate them from their function and deconstruct them to the point where this process is interrupted. The deconstruction results in visions that I approach in different ways, ranging from instinctive to artificial. Along the way, I create a new logic, which I then use to reconstruct the object to something that evokes both familiar and new thoughts.

I am trying to map of whole spectre of forces forming the world. Previously I focused on observing natural processes to understand the base conditions forming human essence. Presently I would like to also understand human behaviour, such as being on the fragile edge between the order and chaos, formation and dissolution, stability and instability. For this topic I hold conversations with myself and with others. During work naturally arises conflicts and misunderstandings and their "solution" is the main point of the whole process.

I draw the images of my soul.The sites I see, the places and views I grew in and visit Objects, people and animals transform under my brush and exist in a more intimate space on the canvas. The objects holds a place in the present reality but in the same time touches and exist also in a distant place. Makes him feel like he can see both – his soul and his existence I always search for an internal space and light trying to transform them on the canvas to something real and full of hope. I imagine my childhood scenery and experiences bringing them back to life, playing with what is a story and what is real, what is now and what is then I focus in the primary effect of the paint on the viewer hoping that it allow him to stay in the place I created for him a little longer.

Cities start to have different manifestations in the eyes of different travelers. The core values of this creative project include redefining the flow of spatial boundaries from a traveler’s perspective and delving into how the interventional relationship between man and space is formed, and how to develop a mutual interdependent relationship with one’s surroundings.

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Lisa Sebestikova

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lives and works in London, United Kingdom

Viktor Fuček

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lives and works in Bratislava, Slovakia

Aviv Keller

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lives and works in Jaffa, Israel

Karel Bata Renée Regan

Karel Bata

Kimberley Beach

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I am developing work for various drawing, sewing, and infograffing projects as well as performance. Each medium revolves around a web of connecting strings that pull in various ways on the certain dichotomies that surround us. The moments of intimacy vs. complacency, chaos vs. patterns, personal identity vs. societal creation, beliefs vs. doubts, design vs. function and most importantly reality vs. reverie. Many of my photographic works pay tribute to my work mindset of cataloguing and preserving for posterity’s sake. This is especially evident in my ongoing work of creation, Planet Advivon where it is a life goal to preserve a certain collection of creatures to forever be observed.

Using The Disinhibitor, an apparatus I invented as part my MA research into Stereo 3D at Ravensbourne College, Memories Can’t Wait is a truly immersive installation – a lucid out-ofbody experience that playfully challenges our notions of the space we inhabit. Wearing custom 3D glasses, visitors and are led into a large dark room where a simple, but carefully thought-out, arrangement of lasers and projectors create a virtual environment in which they appear to float between moving planes of stars that stretch out to infinity. I work with emerging technologies, and believe the best art comes from seeking out happy accidents. I strive to create works that take the viewer in new and unexpected directions.

In developing a continuous view of the past in order to achieve a new evaluation of past events in her life any single event loses its weight and the processlike character of all events and their interaction become more important. Autobiography work assumes that any human being is obliged to comply with tasks in life. These life tasks, stemming from our subconscious levels, are the driving force to our behaviour. Autobiography work helps to get closer to this central theme – the “red thread” - that runs through each life.

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lives and works in London, United Kingdom

Renée Regan

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lives and works in Washington, DC, USA

Chen Yu-Jung

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lives and works in Tainan, Taiwan

Rachel Salit

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lives and works in Israel On the cover Where is Home, Installation by Qin Han

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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uriosity – this may be overall described as as a qualitative characteristic indeed. This is one of the human conditions just like play, taking risks or let´s say – irrationality. All these things are generally human, known to us and there is nothing to complain about. Humanity is a well-known synonym for human nature. Nevertheless there is a very subtle limit, at which curiosity would contradict humanity and therefore it would surpass the moral categories established in a culture – let us mention such things as philantropy, honesty, benevolence, sympathy, tolerance, altruism and reverence of life. This very same very subtle limit is a certain no-man´s land, where the rules of the game, its borders become diffused, and it contains the „but“-s, which are the main focus point of the installation „HUMANITY vs CURIOSITY.“ The audience is put in a condition, where they have two opposite choices – either

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to preserve the lifespan of the virtual body projected on the screen; or to commit an illusory execution. Interpreting the choice made in the context of this installation, a question is raised: which of the two would prevail – humanity or curiosity. The victim as this virtual body is the artist himself, the author of this piece. The newest statistics can be traced on the internet during the exposition. Artist's statement In my works — I mostly deal with art as idea, culture and communication topics and sometimes also reinterpreting the myths of modern art history. Art for me is a exciting game, with the ultimate goal to expand the universe.

Janno Bergmann http://ox.linnagalerii.ee/


Installation “Humanity vs.Curiosity “ in action


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

Hello Janno, and a warm welcome to ARTiculAction. We would like to start this interview by posing some questions to you about your background: you have a solid formal training and you graduated from Academia Non Grata in your native country. How has this experience influenced your evolution as an artist? And in particular, how does your cultural Estonian substratum inform the way that you relate yourself to art making and to the aesthetic problem in general? I want to thank the ARTiculAction team for selecting me to be interviewed. Academia Non Grata was actually an art education experiment, a sort of alternative school that later ended up as a department of the Estonian Art Academy. From the very beginning the main focus of this school was on performance art. The school influenced me a lot - it led to the understanding that art doesn’t always have to be an object, that it can also be something temporary and vanishing as a process or an idea that you can express in many non-traditional

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and short lasting, experimental ways. Estonia is a small country and the cultural space is small as well. In my opinion any artist in Estonia should keep this in mind. You can be certain of the luck of the public from the scratch, especially if you’re dealing with contemporary art. It is therefore important to give your ideas forms that are accessible from elsewhere also. All cultural spaces have their own substratum that influences people who are born, working and living there and this certainly guides my choices as well - at first the aesthetic choices and then maybe also the assortment of ideas and topics. You are a versatile artist and your approach encapsulates several techniques, including materials, revealing an incessant search of an organic symbiosis between a variety of disciplines and viewpoints. The results convey together a coherent sense of unity that rejects any conventional classification. Before starting to elaborate about your production we would like to ask you if you have you ever happened to realize that such a multidisciplinary approach is the only way to express and convey the ideas that you explore.

Exploration and searching are the most important keywords for me as an artist. That is the state of mind where I want to


Janno Bergmann Photo by Piret Bergmann


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Installation “Humanity vs.Curiosity “ in action

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be and that gives me the motivation to continue my work. I prefer to not limit myself with choices of disciplines and selections of viewpoints. I always try to look at my work from different perspectives and give accessibility from multiple sides. My approach is often to leave the possibility for open and diverse interpretations. Multidisciplinarity is not my obsession, but most often it widens the choices for expression and overcomes the limitations of any single medium. I'm a curious person by nature and I always want to learn new things and discover possibilities that are unknown to me. I can't say that I'm especially avoiding making art that fits under conventional classifications but often it happens that we follow ideas without trying to fit them into the the boundaries of wellknown. For this special issue of ARTiculAction we have selected HUMANITY vs CURIOSITY, a stimulating interactive multimedia installation that our readers have already started to get to know in the introductory pages of this article. What has at once caught our attention in this project is the way in which it accomplishes the difficult task of drawing the viewer into a journey on the thin line dividing two conflictual aspects of being human. When walking us through the genesis of HUMANITY vs CURIOSITY would you like to tell us if you have ever realized that such a conflictual relationship could evolve into a kind of balance?

The balance between these two aspects evolves in our culture and society every day. Its not a constant value and it has

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been changing over time during cultural revolutions or just slightly day by day as a natural progression. Off-balance is also a state of balance and we have to compare it with some other state that we already know if we want to rate it somehow. Its controversial but at the same time its human, its all about the choices that individuals are ready to make. There will always be people who would like to draw the line based upon some ethical or moral constructions and there will always be people who want to cross those lines. This dynamic state of balance in this situation we call culture. The idea of this installation has been rotating in my head already for many years and finally in the beginning of 2015 I decided to put it into practice. Luckily my friend and professional programmer Tanel Lebedev agreed to help with the project. Its quite common for me that I keep ideas in my mind years before I start to fulfil them. Its a kind of litmus test for ideas - if they survive over the years and are still interesting for me then I deal with them. HUMANITY vs CURIOSITY conveys both metaphoric and descriptive research and the interaction requested to the spectatorship creates a compelling narrative that invites the viewers to a multilayered experience. A distinctive mark of the way you convey emotions in your works is the construction of a concrete aesthetic from experience and memories and symbols, working on both subconscious and conscious levels. So we would like to take this occasion to ask you if, in your opinion, personal experience is an absolutely indispensable part of the creative process? Do you

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Installation “Humanity vs.Curiosity “ in action

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Still images from animation, photo by Marko Toomast & Janno Bergmann

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

I think that personal experience is not indispensable as part of the creative process, but that its always more or less

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there in the process. Art is a serious game where besides the so-called real knowledge you have other tools to use fantasy, premonition, suspicion, derivation etc. In art there is always the freedom to be unreal, to be bigger than


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CURIOSITY installation was planned as an interactive piece and the goal was to give the decision making process to the spectator, to make him a participator as well as handing over the responsibility of his own actions. The artist himself provides his virtual body and some simple rules for this game, the rest is up to the spectator. From one point of view the installation can be also interpreted as a self-portrait. I would like to credit here my good friend and excellent photographer Marko Toomast for shooting the interactive sequences of the artist used in installation. A relevant aspect of your practice is centered on the exploration of the relation between culture and communication: HUMANITY vs CURIOSITY unveils a variety of aspects related to the co-existence of irrationality and rationality: how would you describe this relationship?

life is or you yourself are. You can try to use the creative process as a possibility to disconnect from your experiences, to escape from them, but then again it will generate the new ones. From the beginning the HUMANITY vs

Irrationality and rationality are expressions that are estimated by the evaluator or a cultural context - they are not absolute values. Its mostly a question of purpose of what is rational and what is irrational and at the same time cultural contexts can change the meaning. If we are looking for known examples from history then lets take for example da Vinci's anatomical studies. Ignoring taboos, he made many useful discoveries of the human internal organs, which would have saved a number of souls. He was curious and his ambition could be interpreted as humane and rational. But at the same time da Vinci was accused of unseemly conduct (and perhaps witchcraft) and so ceased his anatomical studies. The

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world had to wait a generation before Vesalius published his definitive account of human anatomy. From the point of view of the cultural context of his time his actions may seem irrational, but from the cultural context of nowadays we can say that the church and societal views of his actions were irrational and he was rational! You often question the viewer’s cultural parameters related to the perception of contemporariness as the late Franz West did in his installations. “Art Makes You (*) Fly” shows unconventional aesthetics in the way that it deconstructs perceptual images in order to assemble them in a collective imagery, urging the viewers into 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 Nature... what's your view about this?

Without doubt I like the idea of the artist's role of revealing unexpected sides of our inner Nature. To be curious is in the nature of any artist, but I think artists should do even more, they should create new realities and new ideas about what our inner Nature could possibly be. Then we can grow and be the ones we haven't been yet. If we are talking about the installation “Art Makes You (*) Fly” then on one level its dealing very directly with the human and art relation, about the determination in it - art as a distant and unattainable reality. There is a textplay in the installation and the spectator is the one who is triggering the changes in the

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Art Makes You (*) Fly, Installation by Janno Bergmann, Tallin, Estonia Dimanche Rouge festival in Culture Factory Polymer / Tallinn, Estonia / 2013

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Art Makes You (*) Fly, Installation by Janno Bergmann, Pärnu, Estonia

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meaning of the sentence used in the art piece. You can fly if you become a fly. The accessible set of elements you draw from universal imagery in “Kingdom of Heaven” triggers 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?

The function of Art has been constantly changing over time and will continue to change in the future. It always finds its path and the possibility to influence the contemporary age. The installation “Kingdom of Heaven” is a collective piece made by Art Container (Tanel Saar, Kilian Ochs, Janno Bergmann). We created it for the first time in Berlin 2013 and it happened to be at the same moment that Pope Benedict XVI announced his resignation. So it happened here that the contemporary age provided the momentum and the context for a new art piece to born. The installation represents the fragility of cultural and religious systems. Literally - its needed to pump up the system in order to give a proper form to the cult symbol. Otherwise these symbols will lose their shape and fall down as empty bags. Also the material of this installation and how it is built is very fragile and unstable, giving the viewer an extra tactile experience. After the exhibition in Berlin we showed this piece in Dresden (Germany), Tallinn

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(Estonia), Pärnu (Estonia) and St. Petersburg (Russia). The most catchy experience was showing it in Russia (2015) where nowadays the church has made a strong comeback to people's everyday life and religion and politics are mixed together as tools of power. You have been active on the art scene since 1996 and you are also involved with Art Container Group: it's no doubt that interdisciplinary collaborations are today an ever growing force in Art and that some of the most exciting things happen when creative minds from different fields of practice meet and collaborate on a project... could you tell us something about this effective synergy? Can you explain how your work demonstrates communication between several artists?

Yes, it started 20 years ago and collective collaboration was the basis of the Academia Non Grata educational programme. Art Container Group carries the same principals because its partially from the same origin. I truly believe the effectiveness of collaboration if there is synergy in a group. When the right people come together and have motivation to work as a collective - to share the ideas, knowledge and skills - then you are on a fast track and the outcome can surprise yourself. Its not always so easy, but if it works out then the results are mostly better and more interesting. Its often also a question of the right balance of compromises because if there is a lack of compromises then the entire process can fall apart and if there are too many compromises the final piece loses its face. I do not really believe the one genius idea, sure we have seen it as we believe, but it is more about good momentum, luck and

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Art Makes You (*) Fly, Installation by Janno Bergmann Exhibition “The Presence of Absence” in Tartu Art House Gallery, Tartu, Estonia, 2013

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“Kingdom of Heaven” installation by Artcontainer ( Tanel Saar, Kilian Okhs, Janno Bergmann) / SICHT/BETON/UNG" /

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of course the readiness of public. Masterpieces are actually always collective, we just tend to forget about the other artists who helped to prepare the public and build up the momentum to make it possible for masterpieces to be born. Over these years you have exhibited and performed in Estonia, Lithuania, Russia, Sweden, Germany and Australia and you have organized yourself art activities. One of the hallmarks of your work is the chance of establishing a direct involvement with the viewers, who are called to evolve from 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, sure, if text involved in the piece then you have to deal with it. In the case of language specific text plays as in the installation “Art Makes You (*) Fly� you are out of good options, so you just better leave it as it is and hope that non-native English speakers can get the message. In terms of the intellectual level I'm not making many compromises. In the first place I want get something for myself out of my art and secondly I think it is always a better idea to provide a challenge to the audience than to underestimate them. If I'm looking at art, I want to use my brain, not lose it.

Dresden / Germany / 2013

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Thanks a lot for your time and for sharing your thoughts, Janno. Finally, would you like to tell us readers something about your future projects. How do you see your work evolving?

Right now I’m working together with Tanel Lebedev on the installation "All Seeing Eye" and the first showing will be in April in my hometown, Pärnu and then in late autumn in St. Petersburg in Gallery "Dver" (Door). Besides this, I have two curatorial projects in progress. In May I have a curatorial project "Peculiarities of southwest Estonian anarchism" in Kaliningrad (Russia) National Centre for Contemporary Arts and the same project will be in Batumi (Georgia) in October. In June I'm participating in a group exhibition in Bergen. Then I have a curatorial project "New art from St. Petersburg" in July and August that will be presented in two cities in Estonia. Between these activities I'm taking part in two photo exhibitions in Estonia, so its pretty tight until November. Then I hope to start to work with new art projects - I have some multimedia installation ideas rotating in my mind, so we will see. Its too early to say something about this, first things first.

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

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Making-of (in the studio) Photo by Marko Toomast

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L isa Sebestikova Lives and works in The Hague, the Netherlands

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s an artist I constantly question familiar elements, for example, a house or a wall. When I encounter everyday items, I have this urge to rediscover both their tangible and intangible characteristics.

Familiar objects evoke reflexive and unconscious thoughts in any observer – it's what makes them familiar. To get to the core of these objects, I separate them from their function and deconstruct them to the point where this process is interrupted. The deconstruction results in visions that I approach

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in different ways, ranging from instinctive to artificial. Along the way, I create a new logic, which I then use to reconstruct the object to something that evokes both familiar and new thoughts. I trust in the imagination of the observer. When looking at one of my works, one is confronted with a subtle manipulation of the archetype of an object. The object feels familiar, yet suggests a distorted version of reality. The simplicity I strive for walks the line between association and alienation. Lisa Sebestikova http://www.lisasebestikova.com/


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

Artist Lisa Sebestikova explores the manifold relationships between imagination and experience to offer a new vision of the previously known: she uses objects to bring fictitious situations to life that are not possible in the real, urging the viewers to expand their own sensitiveness and to develope personal associations. One of the most convincing aspect of Sebestikova's practice is the way it accomplishes the difficult task of developing a non-verbal language marked out with autonomous autonomous aesthetics and and consistent unity: we are very pleased to introduce our readers to her multifaceted artistic production. Hello Lisa 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 after your studies at the Secondary school for Arts and Crafts in Prague, you moved to the Netherlands to nurtured your education attending the Academy for Art and Design, in Enscheda: how did these experiences influence your evolution as an artist? And in particular, how does your

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cultural substratum as a Czech artist based in the Netherlands inform the way you relate yourself to the aesthetic problem?

My name suggests otherwise, but I'm Dutch on paper. We moved to the Czech Republic when I was very young, where I absorbed and adapted to the culture that has come to directly influence the visual values of my work. In my practice as an artist, this culture has determined my archetypes. At the moment I'm working on a sculpture, which shape is derived of a distinctly non-Dutch building. These differences in culture intrigue me. The educational programs I completed were completely different from one other. The one in Prague was very classical: I studied graphical design and I believe my choices for simplicity originate there. It wasn't until I went to the AKI (ArtEZ Academy for Art and Design) that I choose to focus on sculpture. It is an amazing academy, often called a playground, where one can learn so much if you are open to it. During my education there I rapidly produced many sculptures to discover what sculpture could do.

Your approach coherently encapsulates several viewpoints and


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reveals an incessant search of an organic investigation 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 www.lisasebestikova.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 ask you how did you develop your style and how do you conceive your works.

It is more a means of expression than a development of style. As an artist, I constantly question and rediscover familiar things. For example, at the moment I am looking at a house. I take away the original function and look for the moment our thoughts run off with the suggestion I'm trying to create. In doing so, I create a new framework in which I transform familiar things into something new. It implicates an absurd reality filled with dysfunctional changes, which appear to be a copy of the objects that are so familiar to us. The simplicity I strive for walks the line between association and alienation. For this special edition of ARTiculAction we have selected Where the notion of content unfolds, an extremely interesting installation 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 it, is the way it accomplishes the difficult task of establishing a channel of

communication between the subconscious sphere and the conscious one, to unveil the manifold nature of human perceptual categories and to draw the viewers into a multi-layered experience. So we would take this occasion to ask you if in your opinion personal experience is an absolutely indispensable part of a creative process... Do you think that a creative process could be disconnected from direct experience?

Where the notion of content unfolds was a free commission. That's rare, especially for young creators. Because it was a commission I wanted to give the sculpture a direct relationship with its location and the first thing I did when I got to the site was to formulate an attitude for myself. My goal was to give the impression that the vast landscape could perhaps be home to a very large building. I have to say that my personal experience is completely different from that of the observer, who looks at the work in a more neutral way. The title kind of says it, I trust in the active imagination of the spectator: the mental power of automatic completion. The sculpture encourages to leave the here and now and to create a mental tension span to a suggested reality. Your works always establishes direct relationship with the environment they are installed in: for example Gravity in the 12th bedroom walks on the thin line that separes the notion of home's intimacy and natural environment, to go beyond such apparent dichotomy. How do you see

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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?

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I find the context in which my work is exhibited important. Gravity in the 12th bedroom was exposed in the garden of the “Museum de Fundatie”, which has an old castle called “Het Nijenhuis” positioned in the middle. Sa-


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lon of the Egoist was created and exhibited at the same time and is a imaginative room as well. Both works are fictional extensions of the castle without walls. I was interested in the ambiguity of placing furniture outside.

Furniture is made for an intimate interior setting and it seemed as if their vulnerability – despite impregnation – was amplified by their exposure to rain and sun. On the other hand, the mirror of Gravity in the 12th bedroom is in direct

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dialogue with nature. You draw a lot from universal imagery and the materials you combine together are marked with autonomous evocative feature: your successful attempt to broaden the perspective of understanding objects, captures non-sharpness with an universal kind of language, that in Fake grass brings to a new level of significance the elusive still 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.

Memory plays an important part in my sculptures as I use familiarity to get a message across. In Fake grass, I wanted to mimic a realistic wall. The curve is fictional, making it a continuation of the concept of the wall. This happens more often in my work: I take an element with an iconic, primitive shape. This makes that the type of object appears to become less important, while at the same time highlighting the adjustment or modification. Fake grass is a combination of a recognisable construction – the wall – and a dark green anti-shape that reminds us of something, yet misleads at the same time. What are we looking at? Is our attention drawn to the anti-shape because it is presented against a wall? Or are we conscious of the fact that when we place something on this wall, it becomes a support and thus less important?

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Lisa Sebestikova

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Lisa Sebestikova


Lisa Sebestikova

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We definitely love the way you question the tactile feature of images, to increase the variability of the imagination. In particular, juxtaposing elements with a marked evocative power of parts Engineer of the accident and Glitch establish 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?

I can definitely relate to Thomas Demand's statement. Previously, symbols in art had a functional nature. Today, this function disappeared due to the multicultural society and the many different explanations of any one symbol. If you look at it this way, art has detached itself from this framework. The great thing about this is that we can use definitions more versatile and that we can involve the context in the sculpture. In the two works you mention I was looking for the malleability of a wall and wondering to what extent it would still be seen as one. To get to the core of an object, I separate it from its function and deconstruct it to its core. What is left are single elements, which can then be pieced back together in an infinite number of ways. By introducing a curve, the wall relates differently to its surrounding space. What happens when the existence of the wall is questioned in such a way that the wall fades to become a strange chunk of

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Lisa Sebestikova

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matter? Engineer of the accident is an object that resembles a wall; the observer automatically associates it with wall. Another interesting project of yours that has particularly impressed us and on which we would like to spend some words is entitled Origins of obscurity and we have highly appreciated the way it condenses the opposite notions of order and randomness. In a certain sense, information’s & ideas could be considered "encrypted" in the environment we inhabit, so we need to decipher those patterns. When addressing us to process the things we are sometimes able to catch you seem to suggest that one of the roles of an artist could be to reveal unexpected sides of Nature, especially of our inner Nature: what's your point about this?

Art should definitely be concerned with questions like that, but I think every artist has his or her own goal. What I am personally most interested in is to unravel our defined mind-sets. I love to view our surroundings, and our position within our surroundings, through the eyes of a playful and inventive child. Origins of obscurity embraces vulnerability: it tries to obscure something, but by the nature of its materiality we clearly see something is in there. This gives the sculpture a very human sensibility: it refers to the failures and imperfections it tries to hide. Even though it is a “wall” object, it can say much about us as human beings.

When inquiring into the dichotomy between real life and fiction, your work sheds light on the necessity to rethink such erratic concepts on an unitary viewpoint: how would you describe the nature of the coexistence of such often conflictual and ambiguous aspects? In particular, German pioneer of visual arts Gerhard Richter once stated, "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 has always been important for our psyche, motivation, inspiration, food for thought and distracting the mind in a positive way. However, it is hardly ever used as an object of use and that is a good thing. For me personally, it is a search for the freedom of thought and by extension, the experience of thought.

Over these years your works have been showcased in several occasions, including your upcoming participation at Beelden in Leiden. 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 decision-making process, in terms of what type of language is used in a particular context?

My work is not based on a specific type

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Lisa Sebestikova


Lisa Sebestikova

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of observer, I am not a designer after all. I have noticed that children often understand the language of my work faster than adults do; they have this unprejudiced perspective and a naturally unaltered imagination of things. At times, my work might not be understood or it might be understood differently than I intended. The moment your work is showcased you give it to the audience and it starts to lead its own life. The kind of freedom I had as a creator is something you see reflected in the spectators as they engage and form their own interpretations. Thanks a lot for your time and for sharing your thoughts, Lisa. 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 a large outdoor sculpture about Life Sciences for Beelden in Leiden. The result will be a light, translucent piece and the exterior form and colour will be largely determined by objects that are to be placed within the sculpture. I am very enthusiastic about this project and look forward to the results. The expression of the material and the techniques I'm using have inspired a future exhibition in which I would like to transform an entire room. In this site specific piece one is literally able to walk through the sculpture; to be completely emerged. I don't know how my work will evolve, I hope to keep surprising myself.

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

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K imberley Beach Lives and works in London, United Kingdom

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n developing a continuous view of the past in order to achieve a new evaluation of past events in her life any single event loses its weight and the process-like character of all events and their interaction become more important. Autobiography work assumes that any human being is obliged to comply with tasks in life. These life tasks, stemming from our subconscious levels, are the driving force to our behaviour. Autobiography work helps to get closer to this central theme – the “red thread” that runs through each life. Kimberley Beach's practice has changed over time. No one piece is the same, there are different themes running through each individual work. The one collective motif is identity, a gathering of emotions and life experiences presented visually, allowing the viewer to witness and experience for themselves; the release of energy into the exposed, ready for someone else to ingest. With this, her

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use of media is constantly changing; she doesn't stagnate in one format, evidence being the variety of techniques that her work exhibits; from photography, screenprints, video and sound. Her experimentation with media allows her to develop her approach to creating. It isn’t stuck in one format; it’s ever changing, finding the best medium that conveys the emotion behind the work. She works primarily with autobiographical experiences as subject matter for work across mediums to explore the vulnerability of the female body. Informed equally by life experience and feminist narrative, she works to take political ownership of the female form, highlighting the implications and considerations of her body when reimagined or re-contextualized in the public space. With her practice, she aims to contribute to an ever-evolving realm of discourse concerned with female authority and experience.


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

Multidisciplinary artist Kimberley Beach's work explores the notion of identity in the unstable contemporary age to investigate about a variety of implications of her body when reimagined or re-contextualized in the public space. In her film The Whole is less than the Sum of her Parts that we'll be discussing in the following pages, she combines text, spoken word and video to draw the viewers into an unconventional and multi-layered experience to force the channel of communication between the unconscious sphere and the conscious level. One of the most convincing aspect of Beach's practice is the way it accomplishes the difficult task of creating a deep and autonomous synergy between our limbic parameters and our rational categories: we are very pleased to introduce our readers to her stimulating and multifaceted artistic production. Hello Kimberley 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 hold a First Class BA (Hons) of Mixed Media Fine Art, which you received from the prestigious University of Westminster, London: how has this experience influenced your evolution as an artist? And in particular, how does your

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cultural substratum inform the way you conceive and produce your works and the way you relate yourself to the aesthetic problem in general?

Yes I started at the University of Westminster in 2012. I would say, as an artist I was quite lost at this point, I started strongly with the creation of my ‘Despair at mortality’ piece but this I can only say in hindsight, originally I thought it wasn’t enough work for the time I had been given. My confidence had been shaken at my previous educational establishment and I thought too much about the perceived opinions of the finished work, it was exhausting. I spent the following year experimenting with ideas and just took the time to figure out who I was as an artist, what I was interested in and trying not to care about who liked my work or not. I created some terrible work in this time but it concluded with me creating ‘Progressive Pain’, which again in hindsight, is one of my favourite pieces. The patience I was given by the university in this year was amazing, to be allowed the freedom to fail is a precious gift and one that certainly helped me to figure out what it was that I was trying to do. My practice from this point developed naturally and on an almost perceptual level. I moved from direct imagery in ‘Progressive Pain’ to the complete


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absence of imagery in ‘He’s got a Pole, you’ve got a Hole; Get the Fuck Home’ which instead was focused on sound and spoken word; to combining all these methods in my film ‘The Whole is less than the Sum of Her Parts’, which is moving image, text imagery and an overlaying spoken word narrative. For me personally, I see aestheticism as not necessarily a problem but definitely something to be aware of. My work is socio-political in context and if the best way to visually communicate my concept is to use imagery that is considered distasteful then that is what I will choose. I then question whether this imagery is now considered aesthetically beautiful, as it now has a new meaning behind it, something new to convey. Your approach coherently encapsulates several techniques and ranges through a wide variety of media, revealing an incessant search of organic investigation about the notion of identity. 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.kimberleybeach.co.uk 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 you ever happened to realize that a symbiosis between different disciplines is the only way to express and convey the idea you explore.

It took me a while to be comfortable with the idea of being multidisciplinary. I had this unfounded insecurity that If I didn’t belong to a category then I wasn’t

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really an artist, I felt like I didn’t really fit in with my contemporaries. I wasn’t a painter or sculptor, my practice didn’t have a visual development that you could track and because of this I felt like I was just dipping my toes into different mediums to find what worked for me,


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what my strength was almost. That is my strength, I’m not a painter or a sculptor, I am multidisciplinary. If sound is the best medium to portray my concept then I’ll use that, same goes for film or print. In my film ‘The Whole is less than the Sum of Her Parts’ the

narrative for me was an integral part of the project, the story was so important, the emotion of the words spoken. Putting this into a painting is possible but it wasn’t what I wanted, the beauty of the words, the emotion in the voice, I needed to use sound. By being able to

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cross over into sound and moving image I can visually give the audience an image but I can also allow them to imagine one themselves. The sound also represents an invasion, this information is entering your body without consent, which corresponds

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with the sexual trauma that the narrative focuses on. For this special edition of ARTiculAction we have selected The Whole is less than the Sum of her Parts, a recent experimental film that our readers have already started to


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categories and to draw the viewers into a multi-layered experience. So while asking you to walk our readers through the genesis of this stimulating video we would take this occasion to ask you if in your opinion personal experience is an absolutely indispensable part of a creative process... Do you think that a creative process could be disconnected from direct experience?

Everyone is different, everyone has experienced different things which has shaped and moulded that person throughout their life, I believe that this impacts how that person would make work, whether deciding to consciously take from personal experience or not. I do however believe that with practice, you can distance yourself from your work. I take inspiration from my life, I work with what I know and then work backwards to make it less personal. Almost how an animal would distance itself from its offspring when it had reached a certain development stage, I want the work to be independent from me. That way, the work seems more universal, more open to interpretation and therefore available to reach someone other than myself. It doesn’t need me to give it context, it should be able to stand on its own.

get to know in the introductory pages of this article. What has at once caught our attention is the way it accomplishes the difficult task of establishing a channel of communication between the subconscious sphere and the conscious one, to unveil and challenge the manifold nature of human perceptual

The themes you explored in The Whole is Less than the Sum of her Parts are often considered taboo by society: 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

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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?

The subtle hints of direction are quite important to me. I feel that the viewer will be more willing to take on board something that they feel they’ve approached themselves. I don’t feel comfortable with the forcing of information, I don’t want my audience to shut down the work because it’s imposing something onto them. My work is of course political, I take inspiration from my everyday life and as I am a gay woman from a working class background it would be hard for it not to be political. For me, if a woman listens to ‘He’s got a Pole…’ and suddenly thinks to herself “Shit this is my experience, this is messed up” then I would feel like I’ve accomplished something because the lack of action and progress depends on keeping people unaware of the inequalities in society, for all sexes. You work primarily with autobiographical experiences and your inquiry into the theme of female vulnerability you effectively accomplished in He's got a Pole, You've got a Hole, get the Fuck Home reveals unconventional features in the way it deconstructs personal memories in order to assemble them in a collective imagery, urging the viewers to a process of selfreflection. 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.

I try to do both which of course can be

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quite difficult. Memory is degraded over time, you imprint your own emotions onto an image and bit by bit, the memory is warped to fit in with the reality you imagine. Even the subtle


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changes that your mind makes to a facial expression, tone of voice or slight physical contact between your body and another can change the atmosphere of a memory instantly. There’s always two

sides to a story, people interpret things in their own way. I try to get around this by working with the emotions I felt during that experience, I think most people remember how it felt the

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moment someone broke their heart or gave them a small token of kindness and I think there’s a beauty in that. I try to communicate this with imagery, which allowed me to gain a deeper

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understanding of those experiences and the emotions involved. This is shown with the use of juxtaposition, which is present in all my work. For example, suffering and reparation in ‘Progressive


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Despair at Mortality shows unconventional aesthetics to question the dichotomy between abstract feature of images and the intrinsic visual feature of information they convey: 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?

Pain’ or the decayed imagery of industrial landscapes placed against that of fertile countryside. Emotions can very often be conflicting.

I think symbolism is still an important strategy in creating art, it is beneficial in creating a sensation or used to lead the viewer somewhere that doesn’t necessarily work when it’s too clear. The feeling of decay in ‘The Whole is less than the Sum of Her Parts’ is portrayed by the industrial zones encroaching on the residential areas, along with the countryside showing growth, this is symbolism, they aren’t literal meanings; symbolism is an important tool in creating an overall atmosphere. My work takes meaning from my experiences, so the narrative starts there. I think that’s the hardest part really, the starting point, I have a lot of experiences that bother me, some very traumatic; so I spend a lot of time in my own head figuring out what would be the best medium to use in order to portray something that’s genuine. It’s a process that takes time, my first idea might be very wrong and the medium doesn’t work so I move onto the next and I experiment with using something

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different. Then it’s just developing and experimenting with mediums and ideas to gain a fuller picture. It’s almost like a puzzle, I have 30 different pieces but some of them don’t fit, a couple of pieces could if they were changed and the rest of the pieces go together somehow. I just need to find how to put them together. Over your career you have showcased your works in several occasions and you are going to have the solo Exhibition of Sound, Print and Film. 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 decision- making process, in terms of what type of language is used in a particular context?

I wouldn’t say the reception of the audience affected my decisions while making the work, that would be preemptive and I wouldn’t know if I was making strategic moves or whether it was my insecurities ruling me. It’s always raw when you create something personal, it’s a process of constantly coming up for air, trying to maintain distance, which can be time consuming; so when you finally reach the stage where you feel like you are ready for someone to view it, it makes you feel very vulnerable. I have a very select number of people I show my work to first, if I’ve got too close to something

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and it’s no longer working with the entire piece, this is when I will be forced to face it. We’ll engage with theoretical and artist research as a means to gain


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further understanding about the steps I have taken and what the overall work is communicating and some point down the line I’ll make a decision whether I

change that area or remove it completely. Chances are I already knew that it needed to be changed, I was just too personally invested to admit it and

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this is when a second opinion is invaluable. With the use of language, I would say that I am more conscious of my decisions. As a working class artist from the North East of England, I have a

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vernacular that is out of place in my current location; with all the connotations of class and vulgarity attached to it. On occasions, I find myself thinking carefully about my


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moving image piece in the future. Thanks a lot for your time and for sharing your thoughts, Kimberley. Finally, would you like to tell us readers something about your future projects? How do you see your work evolving?

I will be undertaking my MA at The Slade School of Fine Art in September 2016 where I will be researching the narrative of feminist movements, examining the issues raised in each movement and examining how this influenced the work being made during that time. I’m interested to see if the issues of working class women have been communicated in art and if so how much attention has this work been given in relation to women from a higher social standing? I will also be looking at work from lesbian artists or those dealing with queer subject matter, in order to examine whether lesbian visibility in art correlates with the intersectionality in the feminist movement. By concentrating on class and queer visibility within art, especially that in the medium of film and sound, I will be able to link my personal to my practice through theoretical research. Therefore allowing myself to develop as an artist, intellectually or creatively. choice of words and whether it is ‘Proper English’. It’s a juxtaposition between the comfort of my birth place and the vocal reminder that I can be perceived as ‘less than’, I’ll be incorporating this into a

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

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Viktor Fuček Lives and works in Bratislava, Slovakia

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ritical thinking, how we should live has led my work to conversional and participative-related projects to discover communication possibilities as a mode to correlate our world. My methodology is grounded on research and preparing the models in “laboratory” conditions. I am trying to map of whole spectre of forces forming the world. Previously I focused on observing natural processes to understand the base conditions forming human essence. Presently I would like to also understand human behaviour, such as being on the fragile edge between the order and chaos, formation and dissolution, stability

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and instability. For this topic I hold conversations with myself and with others. During work naturally arises conflicts and misunderstandings and their "solution" is the main point of the whole process. This conversations become an excellent model situations to solve problems related to discussions and polemics in the "larger" size. It is automatically activates a deeper and more consistent approach to the entire concept and terminology of our culture. Thus reveals its true potential and importance within the society.

Viktor Fuček


Back to Roots (from Antigravity series), Ink on paper, 2016


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

Marked out with a versatile multidisciplinary feature, Viktor Fuček's work explores the liminal area in which the unconscious sphere and direct experience find unexpected points of convergence. In his Antigravity series that we'll be discussing in the following pages he accomplishes an insightful investigation about the eternal struggle of man against nature. One of the most convincing aspect of Fuček's practice is the way it accomplishes the difficult task of creating a deep and autonomous synergy between our limbic parameters and our rational categories: we are very pleased to introduce our readers to his multifaceted artistic production. Hello Viktor 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 hafter having graduated from the School of Architecture in Bratislava, you later nurtured your education attending Conceptual Studio on Academy of Fine Arts in Prague where you eventually graduated in 2012: how did these experiences influence your evolution as an artist? And in particular, how does your cultural substratum inform the way you relate yourself to the aesthetic problem in general?

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The objective of my work is to cover the whole field of visuality. The focus of my work runs across different media in order to express my ideas and the architecture is also a part of it. Indeed, its essence lies in the extension of the human body as our second skin. This expansion both physically and mentally is significant to all human efforts but collides with the resistance of the outer world. However, this issue has its roots in the patriarchal system that is constantly "raped" by this world. On contrary to the patriarchal system, there is the female principle which is softer, more natural and can be more considerate to the world. Female approach is free of the male need to cover everything in concrete. Personally, I balance at the edge of these two worlds and here I seek a common ground-the way out of the present situation. Similarly, the themes of current theory of architecture influence me greatly. Terms as the emergency, attractor or algorithm appear in my work quite frequently and I apply them in my approach to painting and also in my installations involving people. I perceive people as the most difficult and most complex algorithm. That is why a man stands in the center of my interest. The unique multidisciplinary feature that marks out your artistic production allows you to encapsulate several viewpoints: ranging from Painting and Drawing to Video and Installation: the results convey together an


Viktor FuÄ?ek


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Inner Landscape

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Mixed media on plasterboard, 100x200cm, 2015

Mixed media on plasterboard, 100x200cm, 2015

unconventional still consistent sense of unity. Before starting to elaborate about your production, we would suggest to our readers to visit http://www.viktorfucek.net 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 you ever happened to realize that a symbiosis between opposite viewpoints as well as different techniques is the only way to

express and convey the idea you explore.

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As I mentioned before, because I am focused on the entire field of visuality working in various media seems only natural to me. In the centre of my interest is a man as a main point around which revolves the whole history of the art. Consequently, I apply different approaches to express a complex system


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Clouds over my head

Clouds over my head

Mixed media on plasterboard, 100x200cm, 2016

Mixed media on plasterboard, 100x200cm, 2016

of a man. I perceive every one of us as a unique universum and our physical existence as a representation of our shared space. As a result of this, I do not focus on only one medium because it would be an unreasonable restriction of the creativity.

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 your investigation about the eternal struggle of man against nature is the way it accomplishes the difficult task of urging the viewer to rethink about such conflictual relationship, drawing the viewers into a multilayered experience. So, while asking you to walk our readers through the genesis of this series. we

For this special edition of ARTiculAction we have selected your Antigravity series, a stimulating project

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would take this occasion to ask you if in your opinion personal experience is an absolutely indispensable part of a creative process... Do you think that a creative process could be disconnected from direct experience?

The genesis of this series is based on my diploma thesis I did whilst studying at Academy of Fine Arts in Prague, where I graduated in 2012. My thesis was focused on human breath. The very theme made a great impression on me because of its complexity, capturing all the human activities. Breath is a core theme of the entire range of human activities and the transcendental dimension is very significant in the perception of the subject. Pneuma is according to Philo of Alexandria a divine spirit which flows into human soul in ecstasy. According to stoicism breath is the air, spirit, life force as a sort of tension that creates order of the material world. Pneuma is the soul of the world, the active side of fire, the soul of the world which forms a passive mass. Historically speaking, this doctrine might be perceived as a predecessor of the modern field theory. I approached this theme with the record of an ink drawing I had shaped with my own breath. The resulting forms were very similar to the natural formations. In its essence, the combination of air/wind with the principle of water resembled a tree branching. However, when we added the gravity into the equation resulting shapes began to resemble the rock erosion. It manifested the interconnection of all existing elements into one complex system. However, the direct experience engaged both the whole body and the being into the process. The selfengagement raises the questions about

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Arte Laguna Prize Installation, Arsenale, Venice, Italy, 2014

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Long River, Installation, Bratislava, Slovakia, 2012

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human experience and understanding of the world. We definitely love the way your Antigravity series, creates an effective channel of communication between the conscious sphere and the subconscious level. This creates a compelling unconventional narrative that, playing with the evokative power of reminders to the act of breathing, belonging to the universal imagery, 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?

For men it is natural that one seek a story or some sort of form in art. For us it is a biological necessity to recognize familiar form or to leave a mental imprint. My work significantly reflects the performative approach and my work might be perceived as a map or a record of the external or internal storylines. The body is entered directly into the physically imprinted process. This approach in itself contains self-narration and strips down the excess plaque. Perhaps this might be the way out of these times flooded with icons and signs. I am very significantly affected by the views of Marshall McLuhan who explains our reinvention from visual perception to the perception of sound. In his work visuals are considerate to be the wildcard strategies which are continual and separated from the world. However, narrative elements fall into the interdisciplinary category, standing at the intersection of a series of particulars. My work focuses exactly at this area.

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Drawing the viewers into a multilayered experience, your Antigravity series unveils the manifold nature of human perceptual categories: 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?

I see art as a communicational channel through which ideas can be expressed more efficiently and explicitly. Although the verbalized ideas in itself do not contain all the implied meanings a misunderstanding can often be a result of this process. On contrary, in art we work in a field of senses which offers us to share complex information. In public architecture, I perceive the fundamental role of art in the materialization of the unconscious tendencies taking place in society as well as in the individuals. The role of the tendencies is then to be transformed and become visible to humans. This is how only the expected is brought to life and the artwork appeals and touches the viewer internally. Your successful attempt to capturE nonsharpness with an universal kind of language reveals an incessant search of an organic inquiry into the sphere communication possibilities as a mode to correlate our world brings to a new level of significance the elusive but ubiquitous relationship between experience and imagination, to create direct relations with the spectatorship: how would you describe this synergy in your work? 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.

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Et in Arcadia Ego, Cecilia!, Installation, Bratislava, Slovakia, 2013

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B-9B, Mixed media on canvas, 100x100cm, 2014

Personally, I try to consciously go beyond the terms of memory or experience. Of course, these terms cannot be left out completely because we are all shaped

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and formed by them. However, I rather focus on the moment of unexpected or just initiated. This allows me to work at the unknown territory which provides me


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Terra Nova, Mixed media on canvas, 100x100cm, 2014

with the ability to visualize previously uncaptured moments. When I encounter a repeating moment I try to deal with it. I solve it by using the moment of

unexpected gestures or radical inputs which radically disrupt the existing structure of the work. It's basically the verification and the openness of the work

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within its own limits in order to achieve something "substantial" in the art. Therefore, my work might give the impression of an inconsistency or boundlessness but I perceive it as a personal affiliation to the periphery. Yet, I always balance at the edge at some point. I balance on the line where the particular parts collide and become unclear. In my opinion, this is the area that provides us with the new ideas for our world. As you have remarked once, a crucial part of your artistic journey is centered on the exploration of the fragile edge between the order and chaos, formation and dissolution, stability and instability: the way you deconstruct perceptual images in order to assemble them in a collective imagery of landscape, invites 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 Nature... what's your view about this?

For instance, take the place between order and chaos, creation and destruction, stability and instability it is essentially a description of our current world. Everything that is inside of these concepts is basically our reality in which we move and which we create together. Taking into account the already mentioned, the idea that a separate universum is developing in each of us than the reality is a projection screen. It is the thinnest area where all of these worlds meet and eventually create a common image. My works map the fine line that we all experience. Basically, it is the description of the world and the people- the main interests of mine. Lately, I have been mapping a common

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Oskar Čepan Art prize for emerging artists DIG gallery, Košice, Slovakia, 2015

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Education, Mixed media on canvas, 90x70 cm, 2016


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topography based on the engagement of others in the creative process. Here, the fine line between us is directly displayed. My series are called "The Dialogues" and I have been working on them for over a year. It was first presented as a part of the exhibition of finalists for Young Artists Award in Slovakia. Since then, some more paintings have been presented at the exhibitions in Germany and London. Later, the broader access to the theme of the dialogue was implemented in the communicationperformative painting in the Gallery Pavilion in Prague. Here, the common space was created right in front of the viewers and the resulting painting/installation was a common consensus of us all. This map was then left where it was created. To the formation of the map we used colorful transparent foils that were holding on the vertical surface only due to the static electricity obtained by the friction of our bodies. Thanks to this movement we were rotating in space time. While exhibiting a captivating vibrancy, your paintings seem to reject an explicit explanatory strategy: rather, you seem to offer to the viewer a key to find personal interpretations to what you convey into your works... this quality marks out a considerable part of your production, that is in a certain sense representative of the conflictual relationship between content and form: 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?

In my works I want to evoke "the effect" of nature itself. Because nature is never boring, cheesy or clear and always manages to surprise us. We are able to watch it for hours still fascinated and charmed as in the begging. For example, I see my works as clouds without clarity, with random structure and with random regularities. However, in clouds everyone sees something different and this is the output I am most interested in – the activation of the human imagination. The images we see are a reflection of each one of us. What we see reflects each of us and we all project ourselves into our surroundings and surroundings project into us. The result is "The Nature in us." Therefore, my approach is mainly based on my inner intuition. It is reflected in the experiments with the formational procedures and approaches and also in the materials I use. I frequently work with the principle of a chance and I get surprised by the results. A lot of my works are random and leave surprising results. This generates different mutations, constantly changes the context and the in and out relationship. The main feature of my work is based on a deep mental and physical immersion into the process of creation. I try to imprint the parts of my body or work with its limits. Originally, my work was mainly physical. I used to set myself various limits that directly determined the creation of the work and the result was a record of a process/performance. In another period of my professional development, I put the emphasis on the aspect of a procedure. Here, I gave the initial input and the result was created

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My inner Limitations Var.1

My inner Limitations Var.2

Mixed media on canvas, 140x100 cm, 2016

Mixed media on canvas, 140x100 cm, 2016

more or less independently. Recently, I have been returning to the performative approach. It might be a result of my enchantment by the butĂł dance where the work is the revelation of my unseen features. Here I work on my softness.

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?

Over your career your works have been internationally showcased in several occasions, including five solos, as your recent exhibition Random records of my reality, at the 1_7 Gallery, Ostrava. 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

The natural principle I mentioned earlier requires an active watching approach from the viewer. This approach allows viewer to immerse in the work. Due to the advertisement, human perception is set to pay attention for approximately 30 seconds. During this short time, the viewer must receive complete information otherwise the interest fades away. Therefore, my work is developing

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Correlation, Mixed media on canvas, 80x100 cm, 2016

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in a different direction. From the viewer I require his time and his involvement in the work. Nowadays, what does not allow people to penetrate very deeply into the reality of the world is the superficiality. As a result, we have a lot of us suffering from different neuroses. In its essence, these neuroses are just the unrevealed reality trying to visualize itself and become real. For instance, the handling of the viewer´s perception is clearly demonstrated in my video works. These videos are based on the changes happening in a long period of time (sometimes even hours). The John´s Cage quote sums it up: "If you won´t understand the work in the first fifteen minutes, give it fifteen more and it might come to you.” Thanks a lot for your time and for sharing your thoughts, Viktor. Finally, would you like to tell us readers something about your future projects? How do you see your work evolving?

I'm currently fluctuating between two positions in painting. Firstly, I continue to develop the conversational principle of a construction. In June 2016, this principle will be projected in the next project planned for the entire month in a public space of a bus station. The project will be transferred to a social sculpture. I would like to involve a lot of random people who will be passing by. I want to invite these people to communicate through the work creation. Through art I would like to initiate their hidden creative potential. Secondly, I still continue on my works in the tactile painting. Using this approach I map my personal world of experience and sensation.

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Situation 64 / Dialogue Gallery Pavilion, Prague, Czech republic, 2016

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A viv Keller Lives and works in Jaffa, Israel

An artist's statement

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y embroidery work is a personal language that I have developed as a result of my search for new means of expression. I regard it as a painting and use the knowledge and tools I have acquired as a realistic painter. The needle takes the role of the paintbrush and the threads are used as the paint itself. Each work takes months to complete. My subject matters are urban landscapes that I choose from photos I take. The images are transferred onto the canvas with a meticulous drawing. Once the image is laid out on the fabric the embroidery work starts. While I try to stick with the original image I also take it into a new, more liberated expressive realm.

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My technique corresponds with an ancient tradition, but the free spirited stitches I use don’t comply with the old rules of embroidery. The contemporary images drift towards the abstract and fold into them the mediating medium - the photography. The result work is detached from the common context and asks to create a hybrid from the future - a combination of past technique with the realistic painting trend which demands it place in the contemporary art scene.

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Aviv Keller An interview by Josh Rider, curator and Barbara Scott, curator articulaction@post.com

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?

Jaffa based artist Aviv Gad Keller explores a variety of themes with a particular focus on the notion of landscape, he brings to a new level of significance through an insightful process of hybridization. While drawing from an established tradition, his careful approach mixed with his unconventional sensitiveness allows him to produce pieces marked out with a strong reference to contemporary. One of the most impressive aspects of Keller's work is the way it provides the apparent staticity of an image with an autonomous life and aesthetics: we are very pleased to introduce our readers to his stimulating and multifaceted artistic production.

Art studies encompass two parallel processes: creation per se, the product. During this process you recruit all your knowledge as well as your conscious and sub-conscious abilities and organize them in a didactic continuum. The main challenge is here and I assume that every artist copes with it; namely putting aside these influences and creating a piece of art which is yours.

Hello Aviv and welcome to ARTiculAction: we would start this interview with a couple of questions about your rich and multifaceted background. You have a solid training anda after having earned your BA of Visual Communication from the prestigious Bezalel Academy of Art and Design, Jerusalem, you started your artistic career: you later had the chance to nurture your education in the fields of Painting and Drawing, attending a Master Class at the Hatahana School. How do these experiences influence te way you conceive and produce your

I have always appreciated the technical aspect of painting, not going along the attitude that technical skills are marginal. No doubt that technique per se leaves us with questions about contemporary artists. I have recently seen the film "Mr. Turner", regarding the artist who gets acquainted with the invention of photography and being concerned that he will be out of work. This problem also bothers me. Painting has to struggle and justify its presence in the current historical sequence.

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At the same time you study the existing world. You study art history, a fascinating world of changes in constant movement. The question to be asked is to which part of the continuum you belong.


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I turned to embroidery when my activity reached a halt. My existence was focused on painting and at that time I stopped painting for various reasons. I asked myself many questions about painting and these questions overpowered me. However, my passion for creation found its way back into my life through some loopholes. Like stormy waters which find a way to penetrate through a dam I found my way to continue and flow. I embroider for over ten years and I started between my studies in "Bezalel" Art Academy and my studies in "Hatahana". At that point embroidery turned to be an alternative to painting. Presently, painting and embroidery coexist and the challenge is to find the interaction between both. Embroideries are an ultimate outcome of my early style as a realistic painter and when I started my studies in "Hatahana" my embroideries have already taken their present form. The figurative language you convey in your embrodery is a resut 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 embrodery combines together figurative as subtle abstract feature into a coherent balance. We we would suggest to our readers to visit http://en.theartlab.co.il in order to get a synoptic view of your work: in the meanwhile, would you like to tell to our readers something about your process and set up? In particular, would you tell our readers something about the evolution of your style?

Work starts with photography. I photograph series. Photography is the

key to understand the process but it is not the aim – it is the means. For this purpose even photography with a cellular telephone is relevant. Embroideries are divided into inner series like, for example, the travel series stemming from a moving vehicle which creates the effect of an object close to the camera, most of the time it is vegetation found on the roadside, smeared and blurred, while the object in the horizon, mostly buildings, is focused and distinct (Drive 4, for example). The works present a tension between the figurative and the abstract. As for the Lantanas series – I photographed a close-up of the flower and enlarged it. The single object is separated from the whole – a single flower isolated from tens of flowers on the bush. The urban photographs are staged in the way that I reach a certain point at a certain hour and wait until the sun reaches a certain point and creates the certain effect of light and shadow on the buildings. My recent choices are panorama photographs which attempt to capture as many details as possible. The precise object fades away, and details blend one into the other and result in a textual and formative web. I transfer the selected photograph to canvas through a meticulous drawing using the classic technique of drawing a grid on the canvas. The drawing is precise and as detailed as possible. It is essential that the drawing is manual. I am not looking for shortcuts which current technology provides. The process must be manual. The drawing hand is led by the thinking brain.

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Nothing in the process is mechanic or incidental. Once the drawing is terminated, embroidery starts. I am trying to conserve the colors that are featured in the photograph and choose the shades of threads as similar to the colors in the reference as possible. But in each point many threads in different colors will be present. The work is done in layers and slowly the initial drawing disappears and

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a new image appears, made of threads. I progress until the surface is densely covered and the linen fabric which serves as a base – disappears. The image appears. Various images presented new challenges which obliged me to find creative solutions. Over time embroidery turned to be more delicate and the threads are integrated and form a complete and organic fabric.


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For this special edition of ARTiculAction we have selected Lantana and La Baie, a couple of extremely interesting 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 the way the effective combination between tones provide the canvas with a 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 your works, would you shed light to your main source of inspirations?

My main interest is in the way you look at something from a reasonable distance and see an ensemble of shapes which you can translate into something that

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Aviv Keller


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your mind can give it a name and a definition. But when you focus your gaze and get closer you are left with an abstract shape, the volume and energy of a single, abstract, stain, which is beyond words. Just like the abstract stains covering the naked figures by Lucian Freud or layers of paint and texture flowing out from the thickness and volume of paint in Frank Auerbach's works or the stormy energy that comes out of cecily brown palette. There, in fact, started my initial curiosity: what happens when a thread is put over a thread and put over another thread and together they create a dense and organic ensemble of fibers; the thickness that is created when material is conglomerated; the strength and durability when an object is added to an object. These are the areas that fascinate me: the abstract that creates the identifiable. We have appreciated the way your needle accomplishes the difficult task of transferring into a more liberated expressive realm the images you refer to. When developing a more universal kind of language, you capture nonsharpness 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?

Memory lies in the base of realistic perception; the attempt to freeze forever a certain moment. Several questions arise here concerning the subjectivity of this moment: the memory which I wish to create goes through various processes and through some filters in a way that leads me to document a moment which

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was so intangible that it hardly existed in the manner in which I am trying to express it. The object is influenced by innumerable factors starting with various natural phenomena, changing light, and ends at the limits of documentation means. The attempt to capture the object as- is is an aspiration meant to fail and one has to be satisfied with documentation of the memory of the moment. An immediate association is the series of straw cabins by Claude Monet. The memory of a certain moment is different from another moment, however – the object is not changed. The works "Arnon Street Tree 1 & 2" deal exactly with this idea. The large and impressive tree which grew in my neighborhood at the time, was changing throughout the months. Trees grew and fell. I documented the tree when it was almost naked, with no leaves, and the twisting trunk with exposed in all its might. It looked different from two angles. In the first work it creates a sensation of strangeness as if covered by winter. In the second work the sun scorches the branches and creates an illusion of blending with the moment. Colors are almost monochromatic. A very limited range of colors emphasizes the way in which the tree looks larger and more twisted from this particular angle. Even though the works depict the same object they present it in a different situation and create two different memories. The work "North South" refers to a different aspect of the same context.

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Aviv Keller


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The image was taken from a high building in the afternoon. The sun is in the west and the building casts its shadow on the eastern houses of the city. This moment – when the sun is at this point in the sky and the shadow is cast in a manner that divides the houses which, from above, look like Lego cubes, into avenues and dark veins next to light pixels, scorched until flattened, this is such an evasive moment which will never return. Work outdoors is expressed in my landscape paintings. While creating these works I stay for a long period of time – a month or two or even more – observing a landscape which changes permanently. This leads me to contemplate and consider the transience of the moment and the dramatic effect of celestial objects on each miniature grain. While for the embroideries the camera is the one documenting and I am exposed to a certain moment only through the lens and experience the image only retroactively, later, in different conditions from the ones in which I documented; in paintings I experience the changes constantly; whether through the light which is reflected differently on the objects – revealing and hiding them – buildings that are built in front of my eyes or plants which blossom or wither. As a documenter I have to react to these fast changes. 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

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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?

This is the aspect of creation where my knowledge and experience as a painter meet my intuition. As a painter I know how to mix paints and I am aware of the affect that results when one shade of paint is laid next to another. A certain tone can look dark in one context and lighter in a different context of colors. I also know that surface is never absolutely smooth. Each object changes according to the light shed on it. Light can flatten and light can cause depth. Surface always consists of a multitude of intertwining colors. When I look at the reference and see blue, I have to identify that certain shade of blue; when I see that the blue area is not flat, like a printer jetting four colors to create one color on a printed leaf, I create colors composed of many shade swhich sometimes complement each other. Since work is done in layers, I am not concerned when I start working on a green area with a different shade such as orange or red or green. Everything is a matter of dose. It goes withour saying that your technique corresponds with an ancient tradition, but it's important to remark that your work shows freedom of composition that reveals an insightful attention to contemporary sensitiveness: how would you describe the relationship between Tradition and Contemporariness in your works? Do you think that there's still a dichotomy

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between such apparently different aspects of art?

The rule leading me during creation when I try to express an object is: forget what you know about this object and refer only to what you see. This rule refers also to the interpretation of my work: let us put aside our knowledge as far as traditional embroidery is concerned: embroidery crafted with uniform stitches according to given rules. When I discovered the world of embroidery I knew very little about it and I was in fact a Tabula Rasa. I invented my own system of rules which is very often opposed to the traditional manner of embroidery. Differences are very significant. Let us talk about the topic and put aside the context. Embroidery is one of the most ancient crafts. It is mentioned in the bible and remnants were found throughout the ancient world. Most artifacts known today are from the 18th century. This craftsmanship is transferred from generation to generation and is identified with females. The immediate association is of a task for a moment of leisure; a task transferred from mother to daughter while men go to war. Embroidery has strict rules which are followed just like pouring material into a mold. There is little freedom to follow personal interpretation. We are living in the 21st century and rules have changed. Men are doing now "women's tasks" and the other way around. Traditional materials are being used for contemporary means of expression. On the other hand, new

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technologies enable the creation of elements which have always been produced manually. Using embroidery as a contemporary means of expression is like painting with oil paints with which painters have always painted and which have hardly changed over time, except that in the past they were used to depict figurative religious scenes or genre images, leisure-time scenes or portraits, while today oil paints are used for every and each style alongside other traditional paints. There are no rules and no special style of painting with regards to the use of oil paints. So oil paints on canvas are referred to as a painting and a thread embroidered with a needle on a fabric is still referred to as embroidery but in both cases evolution of the result moved far away from the origin. Another aspect of my work which distinguishes it from traditional art concerns the images which I create. The images move between realism, or sometimes hyper-realism, to abstract. For example, in the work "South West" the scenery moves forwards and backwards, while the structures in front are sharp and clear and they become obscure towards abstract when the horizon is moving further away. Most images in traditional embroideries are figurative and naĂŻve. I refer to life at present, and in this work I tried to transmit the sense of dusty and crowded southern streets, with no flora, which are depicted in this work. Other contemporary elements appear in some other works such as an air conditioner, an electric pole or workshops. The work "Drive" refers directly to photography since it is impossible to capture these

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images through a "naked" eye. These are typical contemporary images. To sum up: I pour the traditional material into a contemporary mold both as far as the manner of use is concerned and as far as images are concerned. Embroidery, therefore, just like oil paint, has digressed from its early uses. The materials survived but were transformed while still being relevant and there is still much to say through them. 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: 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?

While in the previous question we went back to the past, so the answer to this question also takes us to the past – to the moment or moments when it was understood that an ugly object or a meaningless one can become a beautiful and interesting piece of art – with emotion and poetics. The topics that I choose, the landscapes, are intentionally mundane, almost incidental, such as urban neighborhoods which are sometimes not pleasant and even ugly. This is the neighborhood in which I live and act. I freeze a daily visual segment and turn it through embroidery into something sublime. The tension between the daily image and the act of freezing through 28

painting – creates the interest. This is obvious in the work "Lantana". This is a common flower. It is not a flower which one would pick and put in a vase (I tried and it died very fast). This is a flower that is just there. It is so widespread the one hardly ever stops to look at its beauty. No botanical garden will show off its scarcity. And here I am – stopping and isolating the unit from the bush, enlarge it and check the implications of lighting. Pointing at it and processing the flower turns the daily to elaborate and poetic. This process happens through transition from one medium to another. My eye is trained to observe and tell when the image which documents reality in a relatively objective way can become a subjective narrative which creates interest. In fact the final image refers to two banal starting positions: the routine reality which is almost un-observed and its documentation. When I first started to work the choice of views was instinctive. I did not realize that I entered a rich world of contents and revelation dragged another revelation. Over time I mapped sub-genres and some inner series were created. Unlike other genres, such as portraits or still life, where the glorification is achieved by presenting them in the center, the images that I choose require an additional means in order to observe them. This is the power of the medium. As you have remarked once, you first take photos from places, then you provide your images with autonomous life: the equilibrium concerning the composition that gives a permanence to the intrinsic ephemeral nature of the


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notion of sight. 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?

I feel every now and then that all of my experiences led me to the moment in which a creation is conceived and born. Each experience, minor or major, contributes to a mass which erupts through a creation of art. Psychological insights are necessary to dismantle a photographed image and re-construct it on canvas. I process daily visual views surrounding me into a single visual moment. And as a person is the total of his experiences, his moments of happiness and his moments of sadness are jumbled and artistic creation purifies the soul. Over these years you have exhibited your works in several occasions: 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 decisionmaking process, in terms of what type of language is used in a particular context?

Relationship with the audience is always interesting as one never knows how the viewers will react and to what they will relate. Presently I am more comfortable with my themes but when I just started to create my works were spreading to

various directions. One of my early embroideries depicts a stormy sea. Technically this embroidery was a success – I succeeded in transmitting the surf, but I was never fond of the embroidery as far as the theme is concerned since it did not relate to any other work which I created. I did not see how I could develop it further, except for more embroidery of a sea, and one more ‌ I could initially see this when I selected the photography but it seems that I had to embroider it in order to reach this understanding. Insight is probably reached through the hands. Unlike me, the audience reacted positively to this work. I have to admit that I never know to what they react: is it to technical achievements? I myself like to look beyond. The technical ability is only a means as far as I am concerned. This might be a trap and I have to watch my steps. The appreciation expressed towards the ability to depict something in an absolute manner such as hyper realistic paintings which imitate reality, is one way of reacting to a work of art. But the questions which arise regarding the relevance of realistic paintings are legitimate as far embroideries are concerned. Embroidery is meant to fulfill an additional expectation – beyond the imitation of reality. Finally, one ear is attentive to voices of excitement and appreciation while the other ear listens to my inner instinct and to the need to touch themes and create continuity and I am keen to develop them further. The series of panoramas is the reverse example. My first works were more limited as far as details were concerned and this fact stimulated my curiosity and

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encouraged me to continue and study them. Finally – reactions to my works can serve as a stimulant if they reach an intuition that leads the study further on. Thanks a lot for your time and for sharing your thoughts, Aviv. Finally, would you like to tell us readers something about your future projects? How do you see your work evolving?

Images for my future works are already there – just waiting for me to touch them. I am currently working on a series with a thematic context and with inner development. In each creation I am trying to reach a territory that I have not yet visited. Otherwise I will be bored. I am interested in examining new formats, larger ones. This will present technical challenges – how to solve a large format. The duration of composing a work plays a significant role. The larger the format the more time consuming it is. These are merely technical issues and therefore marginal. I am interested in enlarging the format just to stretch the image and at the same time to emphasize the resolutions. My photographic choices also become more sophisticated; I dare to touch complex images or go back to themes that were of interest in the past but were not optimized such as, for example, dealing with the double motif. Since the embroideries have always been affected by my painting and my painting was influenced by my embroideries those two inseparable areas have interacted throughout the way, and I am curious to see how development in one area will affect the other.

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K arel Bata Lives and works in London, United Kingdom

An artist's statement

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sing The Disinhibitor, an apparatus I invented as part my MA research into Stereo 3D at Ravensbourne College, Memories Can’t Wait is a truly immersive installation – a lucid out-of-body experience that playfully challenges our notions of the space we inhabit. Wearing custom 3D glasses, visitors and are led into a large dark room where a simple, but carefully thought-out, arrangement of lasers and projectors create a virtual environment in which they appear to float between moving planes of stars that stretch out to infinity. There's more information and pictures on my blog: http://bit.ly/KarelBata-Memories I have adopted a catch-phrase: 'A technician sees a bug and fixes it. An artist sees a bug and explores it.' I work with emerging technologies, and believe the best art comes from seeking out

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happy accidents. I strive to create works that take the viewer in new and unexpected directions. I was born of Czech political refugees, and started in the entertainment industry at Soho's infamous Gargoyle Club during the early days of the comparatively respectable Comedy Store. Back in 1981 – and well ahead of my time! – I created Europe's first projection mapping installation. After working extensively in theatre, the film industry, photography, and computer generated imagery I went to Ravensbourne College in 2011 and studied for a MA in Stereo 3D. While there I created several 3D shorts which are currently doing the rounds at film festivals, and a series of immersive 3D environments using lasers and projection mapping. I've always liked the idea that Bigger is Better, and strive for bold dramatic impact. My work is seldom a static art-piece but an environment the viewer must enter – and in so doing experience a feast for the senses.


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Karel Bata An interview by Dario Rutigliano, curator and Josh Ryder, curator articulaction@post.com

London based artist Karel Bata's work accomplishes the difficult task of triggering the viewer's perceptual parameters to explore the elusive notion of memory. For his site specific installation Memories Can't Wait, that we'll be discussing in the following pages, he has created an environment that forces the viewer to subvert the relationship between perception and experience, to go beyond such apparent dichotomy. One of the most convincing aspect of Bata's approach is the way it condenses the permanent flow of associations in the realm of memory to draw the viewer into new and unexpected experience: we are really pleased to introduce our readers to his stimulating artistic production. Hello Karel and a warm welcome to ARTiculAction: to start this interview, would you like to tell us something about your background? How does your cultural substratum inform the way you deal with the aesthetic problem in general? What disciplines does your work originate from?

Hi, and thanks. I’m very flattered to be included in this issue of ARTiculAction, which gives me the opportunity to look back and consider my roots.

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My father worked for an ad agency during the heady Mad Men days. He would bring home lenticular 3D images he was working on. Many were abstract, but still we ended up with the obligatory 3D budgie adorning our kitchen window. I was fascinated by these objects that seemed to have something lurking inside or behind them, and this notion must have stuck with me. Much of my teens was spent at the picture-house (my local being a memorably huge 2,000 seater) in the company of matinee cheap-seat pensioners absorbing the radical cinema of the 70s. I would also trek off to the National Film Theatre where classics like Welles’ The Lady From Shanghai, with its slippery grip on reality, held me in thrall.. Leaving home I lucked into theatre, lucky enough to work on productions like Amadeus and Sweeney Todd. I discovered there how a live show can be a living breathing thing having a metalife all of its own that would grow, evolve, mature, and age. It’s where I learned the importance of connecting with an audience - as it was they who breathed life into the whole enterprise. Meanwhile I devoured the monochrome photography of Walker Evans, Robert Capa, the NFA, etc. – I must have bought the whole PhotoPoche catalog! I was a frequent visitor to Soho’s Photographers’


The Tree That Blinked, Gallery 286 (2013)


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Gallery. There I got blown away by Lucas Samaras’ bold use of colour, and his physical manipulation of Polaroid prints which was so radical back then. I saved up, bought a SX70 Camera, and set about moulding the dye layers as images formed, heating the prints, taking them apart, and even putting them in the microwave. Sparks flew(!) and each image was unique, yet a style clearly emerged that was all my own. My experiments with image manipulation led me to create Another Grey Area (1981). This used a Meccano-built rig housing a mirror linked to a motor and married to a Sony Portapak video camera. As the mirror rotated the fieldof-view covered 360 degrees. I filmed a dancer in Sadler’s Wells Theatre’s rehearsal space dancing around the rig. The video was transferred to film and this was put in a projector, replacing the camera on the mirror-rig. This would then project an image of the dancer moving around the room, creating the illusion of a portal into the original rehearsal space. I believe this was the first Projection Mapping installation in Europe. There had been PM experiments before in the US by Disney, and (unknown to me then) Michael Naimark used a film camera mounted on a turntable in 1980. Another Grey Area was shown at a Sadler’s Wells event, and the London Film-Makers’ CoOp. Back then the art world was very different, less open, and becoming a commercial artist never entered my head. I was happy to continue in theatre – and my funky artistic experiments playing with perceptions of space while exploring my own obsessions with

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The Tree That Blinked (2013) memory-space were largely confined to my bohemian circle, with the occasional public viewing. Your approach coherently encapsulates several disciplines and reveals an incessant search of an organic


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investigation about the theme of memory: the results convey together a coherent and consistent sense of harmony and unity. Were there any specific events in your life that led you to this preoccupation?

During my 20s I had a road accident that led to a catastrophic loss of memory. As the haze from the painkillers wore off, I was shocked to find I could not remember my past. Fragments remained (more would return later) but right then I was in some vacuum. My first reaction

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Seen and Not Seen (2014) was panic - who was I? I had a name one which seemed a little strange to me. I lived in this space, and in this body. But what did all that mean? I felt it should have some kind of meaning. It is certainly true that your sense of identity is in large part resident in your recollection of

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personal history - your sense of mineness. You are that person carrying that narrative of doing those various things, or having them done to you, which in turn you feel has created the person that is now you. So... if you take that


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once I’d accepted the situation – it took a few days – I felt no urge to go and rebuild my past. That surprised me, but many amnesiacs report the same. I just wanted to gather together what practical details I needed to function and move on - to find myself a roadmap and follow it. I’d had a close call, and felt determined to make the most of what was left. Human beings are resilient adaptable creatures. The experience left me with a preoccupation with how memory directly or otherwise informs our lives, and our perceptions of the world and our place within it. How and why do we construct these narratives about ourselves? How much is just an illusion? (Most of it, I’ve come to realise!) We can ask the questions, and can attempt answers (maybe even stumble across some kind of truth) but how can we ever really know..? We would like to ask you how did you develop your style and how do you conceive your works.You have a solid formal training and after having earned your Bachelor’s Degree of Film and Video Production that you have received from the West Surrey College of Art and Design, you nurtured your education with a Master’s Degree of Stereo 3D. How do these experience influence on your evolution as an artist and on the way you relate yourself to artmaking?

narrative away does it mean your sense of identity falls away..? Well, I can personally vouch for the fact that you are still there, if a little bewildered, and suspended in some existential void. And it is a bit lonely. But

Another Gray Area led me to study film at WSCAD. They offered plenty of scope for practical experiment, and at the time post-structuralism was the in-thing. I loved all that stuff: to pose a question means using a language to ask it with; but language does not arrive meaningfree, it comes with its own history and narratives which will shape the question

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you are asking; so how can you ask a question without putting limits on the answer? This perspective wasn’t entirely new - anyone familiar with research into language development, or debate on scientific methodology, might wonder what the fuss was about. But it had political implications for artistic practices and for analysis, particularly the more Freudian approaches which at the time were of some interest to me. It helped define my own aesthetic practice, and the dialog between myself as creator and the audience. Language and memory are central concerns of mine. A boon there was a sister course in animation led by Roger Noakes. Animation is nothing but manipulating images. I sat in on their lectures, and on a trip to Annecy Animation Festival saw Zbigniew Rybczyński's Tango. He’d disrupted the perceived viewer space by compositing multiple layers to create the illusion of an impossible number of people in a room. Much later, during my MA in Stereo 3D at Ravensbourne College, I created a version / homage taking this concept literally into another dimension - 3D Tango. At one point there are 16 layers of green-screen 3D image and each with a left and a right master. That is a lot of work in post! I shot eight 3D projects at Ravensbourne, which are now rolling out to film festivals. That level of productivity could only be possible within a supportive college environment. I was surprised how few students took advantage of it. Between the two colleges I had worked in the film industry, on music videos, and many TV ads for the likes of Tony Kaye and David Bailey. The MA gave me a route back to my art-practice roots.

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Seen and Not Seen (2014)

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Seen and Not Seen (2014)

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I created The Tree That Blinked at Jonathan Ross’s Gallery 286 – a tonemapped video of my face was projected into a suitable tree. The image hardly moves, but occasionally blinks. The compelling effect is as if the tree itself has been cut to the shape of my head! It’s hugely popular wherever shown, and was exhibited on a large scale at Canary Wharf’s 2014 Winter Lights. Another was Seen and Not Seen – a sitespecific projection mapping installation using images projected on to a dozen masks (suspended from the ceiling) and a screen. It ran off a Mac, and used Talking Head’s song of the same title about a man who speculates he may be able to change his appearance through willpower alone. The faces were prerecorded videos of actors speaking the lines of the song. Visitors were led into a darkened room, where morphing faces would appear to be hanging in space while a screen played an edit of classic popular movies that were rich with themes about personal identity. For this special edition of ARTiculAction we have selected Memories Can't Wait, an interesting site-specific installation. Before starting to elaborate about your production, we would suggest to our readers to visit https://vimeo.com/75155968 in order to get a synoptic view of your multifaceted artistic production: while walking our readers through your process and set up. What has at once caught our attention of this work is the way its successful attempt to capture nonsharpness of physicality with an universal kind of language, bringing to a new level of significance the elusive but ubiquitous relationship between

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experience and memory to urge us to rethink and sometimes even subvert the way we relate ourselves to such ubiquitous concepts: while walking our readers through the genesis of this project, would you shed light on the way you you conceived the The Disinhibitor, which plays a crucial role in this work?

Memories Can’t Wait was an iteration of The Disinhibitor - a large site-specific installation that is a constant work-inprogress. At Ravensbourne I researched methods of creating virtual spaces using the tools of Stereo 3D projection. It’s a very fertile but under-explored area. There’s a steep learning curve with S3D, but once you’re over that the possibilities are exciting. The physical world we inhabit is defined by what we see of it and our expectations stemming from memories of that place or similar. This creates a mental ‘map’ we carry around with us and project forwards. Armed with the appropriate tools, an artist can play with that map. We’re now seeing some interesting experiments in VR doing just that. For the MA postgrad show I wanted to create a huge perceptual space rich in metaphor. I’d been building towards this. It would have to be BIG, rich in associations, specific and emotional, and perhaps even kitsch. So, in the blackedout TV studio I planned a spotlit stage on which an Elvis look-alike sang Love Me Tender. Swirling around him on the floor would be projected 3D stars creating a nebulous environment that defied spatial logic. Visitors (wearing my proprietary design of 3D glasses combining anaglyphic and diffraction materials) would see him and themselves apparently afloat in this vast virtual

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Karel explaining the principles

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environment representing the nebulous space of personal memory where Elvis himself (the performer, and his music) inhabits his own chunk of memory-space in our psyches. That was the plan. A week before the show I talked to Jim Webb, an expert on lasers and holography. I suggested he bring in a blue and red laser for a test, as I thought it might create another layer of virtual space to make the piece more abstract. Big and abstract were promising. It was stunningly successful, and so The Disinhibitor was born. Unfortunately Elvis himself got put on the back-burner, but I promise: Elvis will return! Memories Can't Wait establishes direct relations with the viewers: 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?

Discourse with an audience is vital. Without it there is no meaningful transaction - it would just be me in a room with my projections thinking how cool it all looked. Sure, it’s fun to play with things, but you reach a point where you really need to communicate what you’re up to. I do find my films being shown at remote film festivals difficult what happened there? Did they like it? The interesting thing about Memories – by contrast with the very different world of painting drawing and sculpture – is there is no meaningful way of comparing viewer experiences. The language isn’t there. With a painting you can take a photo, and everyone will agree on what it is, and you can talk about it. With Memories the experience is not so much

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perceived at the back of the retina, but somewhere deeper. No camera will capture it. Of course this essentially is true of all art, but here the experience is particularly ephemeral. Some visitors get very excited, some dance, some lie on the floor (I’ve noticed that lying on the floor is kind of infectious). They will say things like, ‘Hey, look at that! Do you see what I’m seeing?’ Sorry friend, but I really can’t tell you. It can feel like you’re attending some drug-takers symposium! And when I do compare notes I realise that visitors are not seeing the same things as me. I’ve found the more private you make an artwork, the more private it becomes. People arrive with such different sets of baggage, experiential and associative, that mediate what they see. In short, the immersive experience triggers things that are personal to them and largely inaccessible. But then.. you still share the experience in a social sense, with strangers who express gratitude for what you’ve given them, but there’s no tangible way of knowing what exactly that was. Memories Can’t Wait has been staged several times since, including Shoreditch Digital Festival 2015. We have appreciated the way Memories Can't Wait, through an effective synergy between Art and Technology, condenses physical gestures and ethereal perspectives into a coherent unity. The impetuous way modern technology has nowadays came out on the top has dramatically revolutionised the idea of making music and of Art in general. We are sort of convinced that new media will definitely fill the apparent

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Disinhibitor preview

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dichotomy between art and technology and seemingly Art and Technology are going to assimilate one to each other... what's your opinion about this?

It’s interesting. Artists used to be much more the innovators creating the technologies they worked with – often out of necessity. Nowadays they tend to be users. I’m still of that older tradition Another Gray Area and The Disinhibitor were created from scratch and were/are the first of their kind (I’m proud to say). We have reached the point Joseph Beuys predicted where the technology is so accessible that ‘everyone is an artist’ showing the world how unique and wonderful they are. With that have come no meaningful arbiters of taste, and no gateway for the mountain of mediocrity. I’d so hate to be a professional photographer now. The avant-garde is gone – no more Shock of The New. But what’s exciting is the means of distribution is growing. I’ve just watched Sila Sveta’s extraordinary Levitation online – a ballet created solely for the camera. It’s meant to be distributed via social media. This is a growing trend. The 2015 Lumen Prize was won by a phone app. Art is being created for VR headsets, where everyone will get a different experience. Galleries are making substantial excursions into the net. This will redefine art. Your successful attempt to communicate without words unveils the flow of information through an effective non linear narrative, establishing direct relations with the viewers: German multidisciplinary artist Thomas Demand once stated that "nowadays art can no longer rely so much on symbolic

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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?

The audience creates their own narratives. For all their outward expressions of how they feel, they’re doing something private and inaccessible. And I think that’s always been true. Ask two people what happened in a movie (and what could be more narrative-centric?) and you’ll get different answers. You are but a guide. I try to create works that let people explore their own psychological spaces. By creating environments that are abstract yet deeply evocative, and by giving them choices, they will invent their own meanings and narratives - thus becoming their own artists. Memories Can't Wait also shows the aesthetic consequences of a combination between the dynamic feature of movement and our subconscious sphere, 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?

Well, there’s art used as aesthetic decoration - it would be a dull world without the Van Gogh and Warhol prints adorning our walls, and there’s also art (and what we maybe pretentiously regard as ‘good art’) that has always been about looking at the world with a fresh eye, challenging preconceptions.

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The laser rig


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The floor

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But, and much more importantly, out of that art we see the possibility of another point-of-view. If you can look at this or that from a fresh perspective, then you can look at anything else anew. It encourages thinking outside of the box. This has always been political dynamite. The world emerging now is one of apparently increasing choice, but it’s a choice defined by commodification and uniformity. You can buy so many different types of trainers nowadays – and it’s what kids will target when they go looting. But... they’re just trainers. How did they get to be so important? Likewise movies are dominated by comic-book narratives that have become depressingly formulaic. What’s going on here? My work certainly offers a cool artsy experience, but I would hope viewers walk away incrementally more aware that there are other possibilities. As you have remarked once, the best art comes from seeking out happy accidents: what is the role of chance and improvisation in your process?

As I often say: a technician sees a glitch and fixes it. An artist sees a glitch and explores it. Most great discoveries didn’t start with someone shouting ‘Eureka!’ but with, ‘Ah, that’s interesting...’ This is so true with emerging technologies, particularly when mixed together. After a while you become adept at spotting the good glitches. And it really is great to be surprised! Not all accidents are the same, and the ones you notice as worthy of exploring are peculiar to you. There are ways that you have been molded, that are unique to you yourself, that shape your relationship to

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the medium you’re working with in ways you can never fully grasp. Stuff creeps under your skin that you’re often unaware of, that will mould your choices. Only much later you may look back and say “Yes, that thing did something to me,” but rarely in ways you would have expected. 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?

With something like Stereo 3D you can’t escape the technical side, which can so easily lead to nausea if done badly. You have to consider carefully the parameters you are working with. There’s no point in creating something physically uncomfortable – unless that’s what you’re aiming for! (And good luck with that) Beyond that I try to make work with openended meanings – to create associations and resonances. Visitors will fill in the spaces and provide narratives of their own. It’s actually what they want - to be their own creative selves and use their imagination to remould the world. The Tree That Blinked had many visitors reference childhood tales of forests archetypes many of us share. But they were different in ways that surprised me. It seems that people’s internal selves are

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The 'Tunnel'

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A captivated visitor

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remarkably different - we are the sole inhabitants of our planet. I plan to investigate this further. I’m curious about what it is to be someone else - not that I think I’ll ever get a satisfactory answer! Thanks a lot for your time and for sharing your thoughts, Karel. Finally, would you like to tell us readers something about your future projects? How do you see your work evolving?

Thank you. It’s been fun. I come from a multiplicity of backgrounds, and look for ways of mixing them afresh. Right now I’m busy developing a sitespecific Macbeth where the tale is presented from the Witches’ point of view – after all they are the ones really running the show aren’t they? Projected S3D will create immersive ‘scenery’. It’s proving to be a huge challenge! But I like that. I still plan to see Elvis happening some time... My personal site, with links to videos of works mentioned above: http://karelbata.co.uk My artist Blog: https://karelbataartist.wordpress.com

An interview by Dario Rutigliano, curator and Josh Ryder, curator articulaction@post.com

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R enée Regan Lives and works in Washington, DC, USA

An artist's statement

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am a multi-media artist with a BFA in Fine Art Photography from the Corcoran College of Art + Design. I primarily work in performance art and photography. I regularly perform in and around the DC area either through organizations such as Aether Art Projects and Animals&Fire. I also work independently for some performances done in public as a gesture of activism for women’s rights. I am developing work for various drawing, sewing, and infograffing projects as well as performance. Each medium revolves around a web of connecting strings that pull in various ways on the certain dichotomies that surround us. The

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moments of intimacy vs. complacency, chaos vs. patterns, personal identity vs. societal creation, beliefs vs. doubts, design vs. function and most importantly reality vs. reverie. Many of my photographic works pay tribute to my work mindset of cataloguing and preserving for posterity’s sake. This is especially evident in my ongoing work of creation, Planet Advivon where it is a life goal to preserve a certain collection of creatures to forever be observed. And that has always been my goal as a photographer. To observe and have my observations forever observed, conserved, and appreciated. Renée Regan


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Renée Regan An interview by Josh Rider, curator and Barbara Scott, curator articulaction@post.com

Multidisciplinary artist Renee Regan's work explores a variety of dichotomies that affects our unstable, ever changing reality. In her recent Textured Travels, that we'll be discussing in the following pages, her unconventional approach draws the viewers into an area in which perceptual processes are challenged to explore the apparently conflictual relationship between experience and imagination. One of the most convincing aspects of Regan's work is the way its incessant search for patterns provides the viewers with a multilayered experience in which they are urged to evolve from mere spectatorship to conscious participants . We are very pleased to introduce our readers to her refined stimulating production. Hello Renee, and a warm welcome to ARTiculAction. We would start this interview posing you some questions about your background. You have a solid formal training and you hold a BFA in Fine Art Photography that you received from the Corcoran College of Art + Design: how did this experience influence 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?

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While the Corcoran College of Art and Design refined my artistic endeavors it came after the most artistic influence of my life which was at Granby High School. A senior friend of mine introduced me to the artists, Tristan Tzara, Marcel Duchamp, and Hannah Höch along with many others from the Dadaism movement. During my freshman year, she decided to start up a DaDa art club and asked for my help. The first few sessions were full of absurd poetry, sculptures, or photoshoots. It was exhilarating to redefine all that was known and also to learn about the movement and their accomplishments. After my friend graduated, the porcelain throne was passed onto me to uphold the absurdity. Over the next three years I did all I could to get the students interested in seeing things differently as well as seeing how they were intended to be. Many of these were anime club lovers who already enjoyed entering other realities. It was a joy for us to collectively see potential in almost everything to be considered art. One of my favorite activities was to get the students to go around putting art labels on all sorts of readymades in the school. So such things as the water fountain or fire alarm were given new titles that would cause the passerby to also see it in a new light. Our motto was, Bring in your blank and we’ll blank. Ex: Bring in your used lottery tickets to the passage under the hill and we’ll set up a reunion of all the long lost ants that couldn’t swim.


RenĂŠe Regan Photo by Yassine el Mansouri, part of the series Observation 001, 2014


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The DaDa club and it’s effects would prove to form the foundation of my artistic career. Under the guidance of my high school photo teacher, Mr. Fenley who helped tremendously with the DaDa art club and enthusiastically encouraged me to be an artist. One day he taught us about Barbara Kruger and I was imprisoned to this photograph of hers. It was a black and white image of a woman’s face with the words, your body is a battleground. This spoke to me on several levels as I was figuring out my identity and place in the world as a woman. Without the usual mother figure as a guide it was strong feminist women who spoke out that I looked up to growing up.

In college I learned all the traditional methods of making photographs and the history of photography’s beginnings. I had been taking pictures since I was about 10 when my father gave me a camera so, by the time I was 17 entering college I had found my passion. The thing was I didn’t know how to conceptualize art and apply it to the medium in which I wanted to work in. My teachers at the Corcoran were incredibly talented and taught me how to construct my ideas into something grander yet relatable. I worked through multiple traumas from my life and through the process of making art found that the catharsis was incredibly influential in how I’d see the world thereafter.

It was almost an immediate decision after hypnotized by all of Barbara Kruger’s work that I would only wear red, black, and white. The color scheme made so much sense to me and it was powerfully striking in any combination. These three colors have and will forever give me life and happiness. RBW is the current name of my business.

An interesting quote from Barbara Kruger is, "I had to figure out how to bring the world into my work." This is very similar to how I see all of the art that I’ve created. It must have been all the previous mentioned influences that caused me to come to a very curious conclusion about existence. In the recent years NASA has determined that there are in fact other earth like planets out there that could sustain life. These are what I call Planet Advivon which is latin for to survive. In fact these planets are where we can escape to have a mind-cation to. I have devised a passport with several questions that ask the potential citizen of Planet Advivon to take a look at what they feel strongly about. These answers are then paired with others to find a harmonious fit for sustainability. For in order for us to survive outside of our own planet we must be able to find solidarity and I believe the solution is through art.

My father who raised me has had a great influence in my life as well. As an electrical engineer at NASA there was always a buzzing of electronics somewhere in the house. We had about 5 computers in the house when I was around 8-11 years old because my dad was a tinkerer of computers. He is a man of many hobbies and one that he is most passionate about is model rocketry. There would be several rocket launches and still are to this day that i’m involved in photographing. The trips to NASA and the images of space he’d bring home for me as a child were astonishing and I’ll forever be engrossed in what’s beyond because of that. It is with these influences that set me up to enter college and start my career as an artist.

You are a versatile artist and your practice ranges from Performance Art to Drawing and Fine Art Photography: encapsulating such variety of techniques,

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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: so before starting to elaborate about your production, we would suggest to our readers to visit http://www.reneeregan.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 you ever happened to realize that such multidisciplinary approach is the only way to express and convey the idea you explore.

I have an incessant urge to create new uses for things that would either be discarded or that I otherwise can’t use in such a large quantity. This applies to the palpable objects in my possession to either use as a prop for a performance, a piece to my Purification Amulets, Underpital Powers, or even as a craft project for the community. When I have my camera a similar urge to see the sites before my eyes as prey in the hunt for that decisive moment. In this day and age I can snap every angle of possibility in seconds which creates large volumes of images. After going through these collections I’m able to make folders of the patterns I see in my photography. I am able to understand my work and the way my eye and mind work. This quote from Henri Cartier-Bresson has always been there to help me find the balance in the art making process. “For me, photography is to have the head, eye, and heart in the same line of sight. It is a way of life.”I however don't just think of photography as a way of life but art in general. There was a time that I was making lots of forms to achieve a more organized mind. One was for art making that had several boxes to fill out for any one idea. In each box you would put the medium you could use and a sketch of

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the idea along with most importantly the why? I compared this enjoyment to that of playing a game which is another field that I am engrossed in. The mental challenge of having an idea and imagining it in a variety of projects that you are skilled at or want to learn in is exciting. This collection of forms would become a notebook of potential art that could be combined or worked on separately when creativity strikes. For this special issue of ARTiculAction we have selected Textured Travels, a stimulating series 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 this body of works is the way it accomplishes the difficult task of creating an harmonic mix between abstract patterns and reference to real world: when walking though the genesis of this interesting series, would you shed light on your usual process and set up?

These are combinations of the photos from a destination wedding road trip along with trips around the country for my current photographic work with the non-profit, Hispanic Heritage Foundation. In each city that I visit I am drawn to the textures of the streets, the sidewalks, the walls, the doors, and any surface that has an almost natural pattern to it. I’m also drawn to the angles of the spaces that the buildings, the cranes, the bridges, and the signs take up as you look around. By pairing these angles with the patterns from each city I am able to create memories for my travels that didn’t exist before. This parallel existence between the two places causes me to see connections in my experiences that I didn’t even realize before. The photos themselves create optical illusions through the replacement of negative space with positive space. Which

is a technique I try to implement in everyday life. To be able to stop and flip a negative outcome into a positive one is a true skill to master. Staying positive when all the world looks bleak is the only way progress will be made. So, when problems are given a fresh look without any predetermined negative outcome that is when an opportunity to learn and grow happens. The positive outcome of this series is that I am continually searching the world for the places that are soon to exist. In Textured Travels you have accomplished the difficult task of unveiling new bonds between the locations and your memories, extracting new meanings: to quote Simon Sterling's words, this could force things to relate that would probably otherwise be unrelated. Do you agree with this interpretation? And in particular, what is the creative role that memory plays in your approach?

Simon Sterling’s quote can describe my personal approach to a variety of solutions. I tend to combine all my food into a mixed bowl of goodies, place or my outfits to be a combination of black and white patterns. In my friend groups I try to bring together all sorts of people from different backgrounds to play, perform, or recycle together. I find the spice of life to be variety and the more you have the merrier you are. With Textured Travels the combination of locations and perspectives gives me a certain sense of balance when thinking about the different memories. I find that while one may have been lackluster, the other was exemplary. Truth and memory can be such blurry terms especially when dealing with photography. It is true that photographs can remind us of things that we may have remembered differently or forgotten entirely. I always found it

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interesting that the photojournalism majors that I went to school with had to obey certain aesthetic rules for their homework. I would often say that street pole or telephone line is in the way so why don’t you just photoshop it out? They would state how any alteration to a photograph would deem it unfit for journalistic production. This was a clear sign to me that I was not cut out to work as a journalist. I thoroughly enjoy manipulating reality; as if photoshop were my mental playground to create and destroy what is true. This photo series has opened up thousands of potential art from all the photos I have taken over the years. I look at each image that fits the objective as a part of a whole waiting to be discovered and sequenced together. Textured Travels also induces the viewers to abandon themselves to free associations, looking at time in spatial terms and I daresay, rethinking the concept of time in such a static way: this seems to remove any historic gaze from the reality you refer to, offering to the viewers the chance to perceive in a more atemporal form. How do you conceive the visual unity of your works?’u8217 ’

I have been perfecting my organization of photographs that have potential to be art. It starts by looking at a folder of angles without any backgrounds next to another folder of textures. After that it is a game of trial and error as I try to find balance between the images. My goal is to be able to look at the image from far away or without my glasses and not be able to decipher where one starts and the other ends. I aim for there to be a symbiosis of shapes, lines, shadows, and highlights. In the final composition, there is a sense of disorientation as the viewer realizes things are not as they seem. There are instances where the image is startling and then mystifying to the point of infinite intrigue. This created moment is where time and space are bent and molded to finish the puzzle.

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Your approach conveys both metaphoric and descriptive research. A distinctive mark of Fear of Returning to Stardust is the successful attempt to construct of a concrete aesthetic that works on both subconscious and conscious level. As the late Franz West did in his installations, this series shows 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 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 Nature... what's your view about this?

This project is about the fascination with space and death and fear and the space that the fear of death takes up in my mind. Though the specimens that are collected and researched are forever dead, they are filled with the fluidity of death that contains immortality. They are perpetually preserved to be observed and that is and has always been my goal as a photographer. To observe and have my observations be forever observed, conserved, and appreciated. But the internal fear that eats away at me is knowing that I and every observation i’ve ever captured or every bit of energy I’ve ever shared will one day be transferred into dust. Dust that drifts ever so softly into the abyss where it will sync up with others and form into orbits only to be kicked out eventually and left floating as a rogue particle. Proving to myself that I am doomed to be dust adrift in an unending dance around this damned universe that has trapped us all. I look to those that have successfully made a name for themselves as burning dust and gas. Those constellations out

there that have the same amount of immortality that the specimens have, but we don’t worship the specimens like the ancient greeks did their gods and heroes. We all know we can learn from history and the museum archives look at each specimen’s transitional past to uncover mysteries and turn what was once myth into truth. These kinds of transitions in our mind require an ambitious agreement of our subconscious and conscious because often when we’ve decided on the validity of what is true we are not easily persuaded otherwise. As Picasso has said, “Art is the lie that enables us to realize the truth.”Art can reveal inner dialogues within the viewer by opening up the conversation so that they may better understand themselves . This is what I look at as our inner Nature or our desire to act a certain way based on our evaluation of self. As you have remarked once, your main goal as photographer is to observe and have you observations forever observed, conserved, substratum of memory: your successful attempt to produce a dialectical fusion that operates as a system of symbols creates a compelling non linear narrative that 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?

From my Corcoran experience and in particular my photo teacher, Margaret Adams I was taught to probe into the connections between medium and narrative. I explored a timeless approach to landscapes and worked to make everything from tintypes to wet plate prints out of them. It was about fully

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embracing the mindset of the medium in that moment. Often times I look at the plethora of raw material in front of me whether it be in physical objects or digital files and find the patterns within them. From these patterns I’ll look at how I’d alter them to have a concise aesthetic as well as a concrete concept. The narratives reveal themselves throughout the process of shaping the raw material. This process is one I developed during my thesis, Encounter with Chance Revealed. It was a time where I took a look at my subconscious hand, eye, and mind to find raw materials and create art from it. I created a continuous inkblot from the parts of the top 9 reoccurring images I saw in dozens of inkblots. I revealed my unfiltered thoughts for weeks onto pages and highlighted the lines that struck me the most. I combined five lines that related to individual experiences, but that could be read in any direction between the 9 of them. There are dozens of my stream of consciousness drawings that took up 30 minutes each. I collectively counted the minutes that I spent mapping out my mind on paper. Upon further analysis of my drawings I found recurring anthropomorphized shapes. I chose 9 of them to sew into a quilt of equal size to the other works of art. My thesis taught me a valuable lesson about the art making process. I have to allow any potential about the raw materials around me to be formed naturally. This often is accompanied by days of thinking about it, talking to others about it, and writing about it. At which point it will dong on me randomly which connections I should make and why they are important to me, my community, or the world at large. 8) The fruible set of elements you draw from universal imagery triggers the

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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?

I have witnessed the transition myself as society’s aesthetic problem has been solved gradually by the role art is playing. Artists working in package and graphic design have set the bar high in what is refined or new or green or safe. They get to decide the trends for society. If they design things that are greener to look more approachable then more people will consider going green not just because it is the right thing to do, but also because that product is now aesthetically pleasing. This is just one way doing things with a more refined palette and real application of color theory and perception can influence the contemporary age. One of my goals in life is to see art around every corner or in every establishment. I am saddened when I enter a place with barren walls and a light that accentuates all the stains and holes in the wall . Art serves its decorative purpose to cover up the blemishes sure, but we all know it has a grander purpose. I find it’s purpose is to make connections and harbor communication. At the very least the viewer will begin to establish a solid understanding of their personal aesthetics. When it comes to art that effects change I see it mostly in the photography or the performance art approach, but again those are my main expertise. When images taken as truth are seen and shared far and wide they can create real change. Though often it is the statements that go along with the images that make all the difference. The research and dedication


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that Burtynsky puts into his photo projects is the sign of someone who truly wants to use art to it’s full potential. I do look up to his and Ai Weiwei's use of art to push the limits and start the conversation with intention. Often times one only needs to break the silence of social structures by breaking an ancient pot. 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 decision-making process, in terms of what type of language is used in a particular context?

In the process of refining the raw materials in my life I go through stages of work that would not be ready for the audience. These preliminary works might not be suitable due to a lack in accessibility to the average viewer or for their subtleness in tone. I do not however find there to be any perimeters to the aesthetics because that is an area that has to be fully approved by me. So, when it comes to the audience there are often times that I require them to step out of their comfort zones and into my mind. They have to undergo a certain level of absurdity in order to grasp the full meanings of the work. I try to make the absurdity as acceptable as possible as I understand all the world is not full of artists who always see more than the surface presents. Some audiences need things spelled out so in making artist statements there has to be a certain balance of creative writing and scholarly

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input. My work bounces between easily digestible and dramatically divisive. My alterego that I use for most performances would be more of the latter, but also by being bolder I become less aware of an audience. I become fully aware of the purpose of the performance and how to pursue it with precision and power. Thanks a lot for your time and for sharing your thoughts, Renee. Finally, would you like to tell us readers something about your future projects. How do you see your work evolving?

I have plans to have more collaborations with fellow performance artists in DC and anywhere else that wants to get involved. One collaboration that is part performance and part community service is called, The Doo-Dad Rescue Alliance with my friend Katie Macsheyan who also performs in and around DC. Our community sponsored us to provide tactile artistic experiences that engage folks in creative recycling. Our motto is we turn trash into treasure and neighbors into friends. We do this through educational and entertaining events about certain environmental issues that are eminent. Partnering with local community centers, we host "Doo-Dad" potlucks each month. Participants are asked to bring items that would normally be considered junk, or doodads, but have potential to become beneficial when engineered properly. The potlucks provide a fun and safe place for people to create, learn, bond, and most of all, recycle together as neighbors! My enthusiasm for performing will continue to grow in my life and I love all the aspects of working on an idea in that medium. I will continue to create several of my performance art products and put them up for sale in both

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digital and physical formats. With my latest instagram: popthatpowerpose I am sharing the times where i’ve had groups of people from across the country assume the power pose and show me their power! This is important as well as growing my alter-ego, Rex Reginald the Fourth Second into the true creature it is meant to be. One that fulfills the needs of all those who seek positivity, purity, or power. As far as photography goes I will always be delving into its depths of combinations to be made for my Textured Travel series. As I search through my raw materials of photos from the years there are always various projects that are being played around with. I plan on using the textures in their color format and working from there to start. With another project that will continue to evolve is my drawing series, Anatomical Inaccuracies which is a seamless fusion of body parts that don’t normally belong together. These create enticing shapes and imaginations of a reality where this could exist. As stated previously, I like to call this other reality, Planet Advivon. I think of each combination as part of larger series entitled, Type Specimen 2.0 where each is the first found of its kind from Planet Advivon. With my current job at the Smithsonian Natural History Museum I am documenting the mammal type specimens which are the first found of each species and more specifically of the rodentia . To see my museum archival work like this then you may find the link on my website’s about me page.

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C hen Yu-Jung Lives and works in Tainan, Taiwan

An artist's statement

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n the book “Invisible Cities”, Italo Calvino writes that “Memory is redundant: it repeats signs so that the city can begin to exist; an invisible landscape conditions the visible one.” Spatial textures become a part of sections of memories. Through an ongoing process of colonization, boundaries become blurred. Folded memories influence the paths of people’s perspectives. Cities start to have different manifestations in the eyes of different travelers. The core values of this creative project include redefining the flow of spatial boundaries from a traveler’s perspective and delving into how the interventional relationship between man and space is formed, and how to develop a mutual interdependent relationship with one’s surroundings. This creative project involves a series of cities. Based on the creators’ observations during their residency, their everyday experiences living in the city and the empathy they develop for the city would

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be the key elements of the creative project. Furthermore, through a high volume of “repeat” methods, the framework of “differences” will be redefined to become a condition without starting and ending points. A city, being the place people reside in, develops an inseparable organic solidarity with its residents. A stable flow field resurfaces through the interaction of the output with the audience. This creative project will carry forward previous projects’ attention on cities and space, leveraging on the identity of outsiders to enter the core of the city’s territory. Besides a large-scale spatial installation, the project expects to partner with performance artists in order to showcase the output’s diversity through intercultural methods.

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Chen Yu-Jung An interview by Dario Rutigliano, curator and Melissa C. Hilborn, curator articulaction@post.com

Multidisciplinary artist Chen Yu-Jung's work explores a variety of issues, inviting the viewers to investigates about the relationship between Man and the elusive notion of space in our unstable contemporary age, urgiing us to rethink about the notions of perception and of memory. In BoCaptivity, that we'll be discussing in the following pages, he unveils the connections between our perceptual process and the elusive nature of our bodies' physicality and accomplishes the difficult task of drawing the viewers into a multilayered experience. One of the most convincing aspect of Yu-Jung's 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 his stimulating artistic production. Hello Chen 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 having earned your Master of Fine Art from the you nurtured your education joining the Institute of Music at the Chiao Tung University: how do these experiences influence your evolution as an artist?And in particular, how does your

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cultural substratum inform the way you deal with the aesthetic problem in general?

I was born and raised in Taiwan in 1989. In college, I majored in sociology and I found theoretical construction very useful. I also found crossing from theory to creation very natural. I had have trainings in both architecture and music composition. Although they are two different disciplines, for me, they have the same essence. A German philosopher, Friedrich WJ von Schelling, once said, "Architecture is tangible music, and music is flowing architecture." For me, both involve construction of a structured stack. Architecture is a visual representation of the way, while music is based on auditory perception. As an analogy between the two disciplines, the form of music is equivalent to the structure of architecture. In training for these disciplines, in the university of arts training period I focused on use the "learning by doing" to approach to accumulate experience. My creative approach will is to make all the material analyses through a rational manner, and I added personal emotional traits factors through in the creation of understanding of the text. For me, the creation should be based on a balance of reason and emotion. Through By


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recalling the environment situations and life experiences, and then I rediscover myself in the creation. Your approach coherently encapsulates several disciplines and reveals an incessant search of an organic investigation about the interaction of visual and sound associated with space, 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://zephanchan.wix.com/chen-yujung 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 ask you how did you develop your multidisiplinary style and how do you conceive your works.

I have always been concerned wondered about the link between the space of field and the inside inner state of people for a long time. It is necessary for me to establish a "text" for the work. In the process of developing works, I used a lot of materials through the collection and analysis as a basis for the concept of creation. Since Because of my interdisciplinary experience, I would am not confined to the use of certain medias. Therefore my works often present a "hybrid" state. I think works reflect people's real life. Therefore, I will deliberately amplify subtle changes in daily life, and then reproducing the hidden signals through sound and visual means in the space. In my works I do not choose to simplify the conflict, but combine it with space. I return to my deepest self-using the cross-cultural way. To do so, it is necessary to

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investigate the creation of cross-cultural identity and the source of culture through rethinking life and selfquestioning. For this special edition of ARTiculAction we have selected BoCaptivity, 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 of this work is the way it brings the notion of the identity of outsiders to enter the core of the city’s territory to a new level of significance, urging us to rethink and sometimes even subvert the way we relate ourselves to such ubiquitous concept: while walking our readers through the genesis of this project, would you shed light on the way your main source of inspirations?

In recent years I have lived in various places in the city. I think urban space is similar everywhere but the state of things changes a little every day. I used the microscopic views from my city recordings in recent years, and then I simplified all the elements constituting the most basic point, line, surface and time of the space on a four-dimensional state. In the work “Bo-Captivity”, I used a lot of lines to shape the space as balance. Space is formed in the nodes of process. These nodes to me are like interpersonal relationship network among people. During exhibition, I allowed interactive participation of the audiences by asking them to increase the lines. Through their participation, the work presented an unstable sense of movement. This work was combined with Performance Art. I collaborated the with performance artists, Liu Yin-Sheng,

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Wu Po-Fu and Li Wen-Hao, and we performed together on the last day of the exhibition. For me, the relationship between behavior, sound, space and audiences is similar to the city we live in. I emphasized the human relationship with the environment, as well as highlighted the dramatic tension of the material itself. I was concerned about how space was aware of the existence of the body, and then I allowed the body to be aware of its existence as an entry field to deal with space for a flow state of the "sense of time." Through an effective use of evokative elements, Bo-Captivity 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 accomplish the vital restoration you pursued in this work, 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 space? In particular, what kind of reactions did you expect to provoke in the viewers?

Peter Brook once said, "Theatre exists in the here and now. It is what happens at that precise moment when you perform, that moment at which the world of the actors and the world of the audience meet. A society in miniature, a microcosm brought together every evening within a space." I think the relationship between the audiences and the actors is relative. Art in the public domain is an open field. However, there still exists a "watch" and "be viewed" relationship between the viewers and the

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works. Therefore, there is a natural inner field. If we see the two as a whole, then their external borders will be blurred. In my previous works, I used an open field and removed the boundaries between the performers and the audiences. I also made the audiences become part of the performance. I hoped to change the viewing experience of audiences in Taiwan, so I used impromptu performances, which allowed viewers to slowly enter the state show in the current field into the atmosphere the works provided. Each time an audience participation worked, the parameters of the work changed, and the links between individuals influence each other. Your approach is pervaded with a subtle but effective narrative: you have once mentioned a Calvino's Invisible Cities who highlighted that "memory is redundant": your successful attempt to capture non-sharpness of physicality with an universal kind of language brings 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.

Scene, for me, means we live in a social scene. I think when people change the perception of landscape scenery; it is accompanied by a distortion of personal memory. I intercepted the memory chips of daily life at the same time defined the space caused by the confusion perception set by viewers when creating fantasies. I grew up in an industrial city, and a large number of metal parts are my most profound memories. Therefore,

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Chen Yu-Jung


Chen Yu-Jung

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in the process of creation through the re-creation of the traditional mediums, I outlined the city's memories into 3D space architecture. Now these spaces are gradually becoming ruins, and in the states of my deep memories are slowly melting. I think the last time in space must be the demise of the state. By way of "creative systemic", the focus on the creative material through the space became their experience. Spatial textures become a part of sections of memories. Through an ongoing process of colonization, boundaries become blurred. Folded memories influence the paths of people’s perspectives. Cities start to have different manifestations in the eyes of different viewers. The core values of this creative project include redefining the flow of spatial boundaries from a viewer’s perspective and delving into how the interventional relationship between man and space is formed, and how to develop a mutual interdependent relationship with one’s surroundings. Living-Light 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 much importance has improvisation in your process?

I have emphasized the atmosphere of the field to create the space and the audience flow state intervention. In the piece “Living-Light” I collected the sounds of spaces for analysis, and then I used different biological rhythmic sounds to be the reference of light changes. I hoped to explore the sound field entirely

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through a visual experience by the viewers. I emphasized spaces and the energy transmission state that is constantly flowing, while life experiences are linked by the audience. It resulted in the re-interpretation of the work’s significance. We directly sense the "light" of the energy by our eyes, so there is visual to aural representation. I used the way of the biological simulation to change the state of energy and the creation of visual rhythm. Another interesting work of yours that has particularly impacted on us and on which we would like to spend some words is entitled Die Vanwandlung and we have highly apppreciated the way it shows 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?

I used Franz Kafka's novel “Die Vanwandlung” as the text of my musical work. I wanted to show the loneliness of modern society and human indifference. At the same time, I used the microtones to let the sounds present the staggered state of the virtual and real situation. Due to the rapid development of science and technology, the relationship between people not only become alienated, but also produce a multiple personality trait. I think that the function of Contemporary Arts should reflect the value of living conditions and the people of this era. I think Contemporary Arts has

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an important role to start an individual's rethinking about the relationship between human beings and the environment. The arts and our lives cannot be separated. Over these years you have exhibited in several occasions, including your recent solo Line-Field Variation, at the Bopiliao Historical Block. 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?

My training and background are in the performance arts and architecture. I think the exhibition itself is similar to a theater that is in a state of change all the time. I used the "random" and the "unknown" to create a dialogue between my works and the audiences. Through the use of new media technology, I let part of the information be converted to automatic operation, and intended it as a symbol of biological simulation. For me, audience participation plays an extremely important role. I hope that through shaping the atmosphere of domain, viewers get to rethink the flow state of energy in space. However, this matter is not static, but changes with time. In addition, I also emphasized the relationship between "groups" of

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"people". The state is different between a man in space and a group of people in space. Therefore, I like using the groupstructure way to form a lot of materials to render another spatial order. For me, "System Construction" and "state of imagination" are at the core of my creativity. I repeatedly construct a single element in a series to produce a balanced spatial simulation of biological order. Thanks a lot for your time and for sharing your thoughts, Chen. Finally, would you like to tell us readers something about your future projects? How do you see your work evolving ?

First of all, thank you for your professional interview. For me, "creation" is an indispensable work in my life. At present, some friends and I are actively organizing an art group. We hope that more members produce more creative energy. Currently, my creative direction continues toward the creation of interdisciplinary art. Through experimenting and integrating different mediums, I will continue to explore the relationship of conversion between the space field and deep human emotions. I also will propose the creation of a series of cross-country exchange programs. Through collecting the sounds of various countries, a series of voice improvisation creation program will be performed in the future.

An interview by Dario Rutigliano, curator and Melissa C. Hilborn, curator articulaction@post.com

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R achel Salit Lives and works in Israel

An artist's statement

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draw the images of my soul. The sites I see, the places and views I grew in and visit Objects, people and animals transform under my brush and exist in a more intimate space on the canvas. The objects holds a place in the present reality but in the same time touches and exist also in a distant place.

I try to make the viewer feel the air, almost touch it. Makes him feel like he can see both – his soul and his existence I always search for an internal space and light trying to transform them on the canvas to something real and full of hope.

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I imagine my childhood scenery and experiences bringing them back to life, playing with what is a story and what is real, what is now and what is then I focus in the primary effect of the paint on the viewer hoping that it allow him to stay in the place I created for him a little longer Maybe he will event have a chance to share what I feel.

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

The paintings of Rachel Salit are marked out with a successful attempt to extract a narrative from her experience in order to share it with the viewers: when exploring the liminal area in which the conscious level find a point of convergence with the conscious sphere, her works unveil the subtle bond between past and present. One of the most captivating aspects of Salit's approach is the way it triggers the viewers' limbic parameters to draw them into her compelling narrative: we are very pleased to introduce our readers to her stimulating artistic production. Hello Rachel and welcome to ARTiculAction: to start this interview would you tell us something about your background? You have a solid formal training and you studied at the Beit Berl College: how do this experience influence 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?

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I was born and raised in the Kinneret Group (a Kibutz on the banks of the sea of galilee), a ruthless place where education isvery strict. there was no room for a dreamy child, the child i was luckilly the landscape and magical atmosphere, the open spaces beyond the golan mountains, at a place where the sky meets the earth, gave me an opportunity to dream that there is a heaven and so on the wings of immagination i managed to grow up maintaining my sanity. my father, who grow up in germany, brought our home great love for music, opera, painting and cinema and shared his love with me. that is how i was exposed to the arts in a place where art and free spirit were considered a waste of time. after i left the Kibutz i found myself in Beit Berl (a college for arts and teaching) and i was captivated. there i understood that painting is an integral part of me - like a body needs food to survive so my soul needed art We would suggest to our readers to visit http://www.facebook.com/rhlslyt in order to get a synoptic view of your work: in the meanwhile, would you


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like to tell to our readers something

psychological dimension and into

about your process and set up? And

the aesthetic problem in general?

in particular, how does your studies in the field of Psychology inform the

My painting comes from experience,

way you inquire into the

sometimes when i ride the bus or

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train i see somthing that inspires me to paint it. moreover, wherever i am at , somtimes the wind, the sunlight, birds in the sky or even the smell of laundry hanging to dry, inspires me

the same way, a craving to paint, to capture the moment. i dont choose the paintings, the paintings choose me. sometimes i feel that the paintings arent complete, they dont manage to

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pass the moment or the experience and then i "let them have the benefit of the doubt" and go on to the next painting. sometimes i go back to them, to my unfinished work, in order to try and

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recreate the moment i was trying to capture. What has at once captured our attention of your artistic production is the way the insightful


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juxtaposition between thoughtful nuances provide the canvasses with a dynamic and autonomous aesthetic, and it's really captivating. While walking our readers through your usual set up, would you shed

light on your main source of inspiration?

the need to live in a world of peace, a world of compassion, guides me and i hope my paintings mannage to pass

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the massege which is a massege of hope. i belive that beuty, cleaningness and simplicity brings out the best of us and i belive in compation.

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


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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?

it is very important that my paintings shares with the viewers, but mostly

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with me, the experience that led me to paint them. i work slowly, layer by layer, untill the painting tells me "Stop".

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the format and palet are chosen by the painting and because of that they are different every time. Drawing from your childhood scenery and experiences, your works accomplish the difficult task of


Rachel Salit

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bringing to a new level of significance the notion of memory, to bring it back to a new life. This quality marks out a considerable part of your production, that are in a certain sense representative of the

relationship between emotion and memory. What is the role of memory in your process? And in particular, do you try to achieve a faithful visual translation of your feelings?

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with time i understood that it doesnt

experience, its connection to my will

matter what i paint - the subject is

to live in a evil-less, beautyfull world,

not the main point of it - but the

is what pushes me on.

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the painting allows me to create this world - it is taken from moments in reallity that makes this experience -

and when a viewer connects with it it makes me happy.

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Your artistic production is marked out with a successful attempt to establish a channel of communication with the viewers that goes beyond the dichotomy between the subconscious spehere and the conscious level, to invite them to find personal interpretations to the feelings that you convey into your paintings... 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 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?

as an artist and a human beeing which is very active in an Animal organization (also i am a veegan) i belive that the role of an artist is to put on center-stage and put a bright light on the dark, forgotten places in human existence - the places we usually "sweep under the rug" and to not let anyone dodge the issue and hope that the exposure will affect the viewers. Exhibiting a captivating vibrancy, your paintings are rich of symbols and evokative elements. When playing with the evokative power of reminders to universal imagery your approach seems to aim to establishes direct relations

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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? Moreover, we have appreciated the way your paintings convey an emotional vision, wisely balanced with a careful attention to the equilibrium concerning the composition: the multilayered experience to whom you invite the viewers gives a sense of permanence to the intrinsic ephemeral nature of the feeling you convey on your canvas. 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?

in my opinion, a process that reffers only the inner values of art, that deals with the aesthetics alone, is a flawed process. the deeper the art reaches into the personal experience, the more individual it is, it is wierdly more interactive and "touches" more viewers. the more it exposes me and combines my experiences it, surprisingly, reaches a larger audience

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One of the hallmarks of your work is the capability to create an emotional and psychological involvement with the viewers, who are urged to evolve

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from a condition of mere spectatorship. So before leaving this conversation we would like to pose a question about the nature of the


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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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In my painting i create "safe places", places where there is a sense serenity. they are personal places, only mine and that is why i paint them - for me. i am happy when it reaches an audience but i never do it for them, it is only for me i create these places

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Thanks a lot for your time and for sharing your thoughts, Rachel. Finally, would you like to tell us readers something about your future projects? How do you see your work evolving?

my whole life art has been with me, even at times when it dosent seem so


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or i cant find the time to paint, even at dark times, when darkness almost closes and there are only a few rays of light. every time that the darkness fades away and i go back to paint, the paintings, colours and issues i deal with get a different shade but they all come from the same place, the one

source, my innermost thoughts and experiences.

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ARTiculAction Art Review // Special Edition