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ampersand break point/ fermata, 2015 Installation by Ayshe Kizilรงay


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Shahar Afek

Huanglu Shi

Rachel Duffy

Marion Tu

Ah-young Jeon

Aline Bunji

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United Kingdom

United Kingdom

USA / France

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Media and technology create an infinite abundance of unrelated images, leading to sterilization of the images, voiding them of meaning. Distinctions between these outcomes and reality blur, the image is superior to reality. This assumption drives me in my work. My work begins with the products of photography, continuing with montage, sculpture and installation. Building constructions and employing various screening techniques enables me to ponder the perception of time, space and reality.

There is no absolutely public space in our life. I may need to talk about the relationship between black and white again, as I suppose that there is not a black degree called absolutely black, and the same for white. As the time goes, we get more and more knowledge about the world, even though we still have no idea about the whole world, and it remains mysterious. As civilisations develop, people push the boundaries between private space and public space by themselves, such as lovers and couples kissing in parks, people having sex in club toilets, or in fitting rooms in shopping malls. Actually the behaviors of people are fuzzing the weak boundary between private space and public space unconsciously.

The idea of beauty is widely subjective and controversial in our culture and presents an important topic for discussion. Fashion and cosmetics are utilised everyday by everybody and my work aims to ques-tion and consider the obsession behind how we look ourselves and how we look at others. Discovering the way people think and act towards the use of make-up, clothes and accessories allows me to filter that through my work and prompts a discussion about our generation and whether or not this idea of beauty is ‘morally suspect’.

Coming from a multicultural and multilingual background, Marion's work explores the cultural transversality of images and emotions.Her practice derives from a constant state of cultural shock and explores the notions of fluctuating identity and métissage. Working through the relationship between memory and space, her practice serves as an exploration of her own psychogeographical maps and themes. It can be seen as a collection of traces of places, and fragments of emotions and memories, in which melancholy and nostalgia often play a part.

As a person who is living in a generation bombarded by information and new forms of social interaction, my work is about how I feel and how I think in this time period and culture. I am interested in the progress of emotions like stress, anger or happiness etc, and how we act or react to these emotions. How our emotions changes and what motivates that change, and how people deal with the current social environment and what people believe in or do not believe, interests me a great deal. I love to play with colors and space, installation work and clay sculpture are proven mediums supportive of this love.

With my artwork I want to bring joy, put a smile on people's faces and sometimes open their mind for more tolerance.

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My art should make people, including myself, happy and satisfied. I’m always trying to evolve as an artist, to learn new techniques, new points of view and approaches. I consider this very important to evolve. In my opinion, you can learn something from anybody. So, yes, (art-)teachers have influenced me; some a little, some a lot, they helped me also to find and believe in my own style. Honestly, I'd like to believe that my cultural roots don't affect the way I relate to art making, but I guess they do anyway.


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lives and works in Edinburgh, United Kingdom

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Marion Tu lives and works in Houston, USA

Huanglu Shi

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lives and works in London, United Kingdom

Shahar Afek

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lives and works in Tel Aviv, Israel

Ayshe Kizilçay

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lives and works in Genéve, Switzerland

Michal Huss Yu-Tyan Yen

Michal Huss

Ayshe Kizilçay

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Can two such films generate two different stories ? Such as what spectators see similar scenes twice, but listen to two versions of dialogues, so narrative difference produced; but this does not mean that all filmic situations can adapt to change all kinds of dialogues. Because what happens?

My art intends to challenge a single historical or documentary genre: I mix textual and visual signifiers, memories, facts and fiction. I am interested in representing the ways in which nations and people carry the weight of their historical traumas.

This situation acts must be reasonable, visually as much as logic. Two men just move between the edge and the screen center one year after the two men met again.

I aim to explore the

They tell each other of the recent personal circumstances and daily changes influenced by the

metaphor; language

Ayshe Kizilçay or KiAy, born 1980 in Neuchâtel, lives and works in Geneva, Switzerland. graduated from HEAD & CUI, Geneva. has a practice of artistic mediation and worked as a curator in different contexts. likes the number 7. has been featured in cyber and offspace exhibitions in Europe, as well as in several swiss art spaces. has been one of the pillars of the Mac Gyver Manifesto DIY feminist pirate collective. talks to machines through computer programming. loves the number 4, 13 & 22 (but loves the number 4 a little more). focuses on the process of individuation, mental borders and the multiplicity of reality. suffers from severe dyscalculia and developed a fond interest in recreational mathematics and numerology to compensate.

notion of testifying to political trauma by including unexpected witnesses or evidence, such as: collage; mythology or games; objects; hand drawn maps or landscape as memories of people’s history.

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lives and works in Tel Aviv, Israel

Ah-young Jeon

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lives and works in Los Angeles, CA, USA

Yu-Tyan Yen

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lives and works in Taiwan

Aline Bunji

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lives and works in Basel, Switzerland On the cover The Flag, 2014, Performance by Ayshe Kizilçay

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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R achel Duffy Lives and works in Glasgow, United Kingdom

‘We live in the age of ugly beauty, when beauty is morally suspect’ Nancy, Etcoff: Survival of the Prettiest: The Science of Beauty (London: Little Brown and Company, 1999) 3.

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he idea of beauty is widely subjective and controversial in our culture and presents an important topic for discussion. Fashion and cosmetics are utilised everyday by everybody and my work aims to question and consider the obsession behind how we look ourselves and how we look at others. Discovering the way people think and act towards the use of make-up, clothes and accessories allows me to filter that through my work and prompts a discussion about our generation and whether or not this idea of beauty is ‘morally suspect’. I can best interpret the way people think about themselves and others in relation to beauty through conversation. Transcripts from

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interviews, comments found on social media and overheard conversations are then used in my work either literally as text or developed into a visual form. Keeping a balance between the very clean aesthetic demonstrating the beautiful and idealistic side of beauty - and the underlying grotesque and honest side of beauty is imperative to me in order to evoke a fair discussion. The use of materials – such as make-up, skin and hair products, nails and hair – presents this contrast in the work and adds a ‘real-life’ element to my practice.

Rachel Duffy


Self Portrait, 2015 fine liner on paper on velvet wall


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

Rachel Duffy accomplishes an unconventional investigation about the notion of beauty in the contemporary age: in her recent Self Portrait series that we'll be discussing in the following pages, she walks the viewers through a multilayered journey, inviting them to explore the elusive quality of our perceptual processes, going beyond the usual dichotomy between representation and abstraction. One of the most convincing aspects of Duffy's work is her successful attempt to consider the obsession behind how we look ourselves and how we look at others: we are very pleased to introduce our readers to her multifaceted artistic production. Hello Rachel and a warm welcome to ARTiculAction. We would start this interview posing you a couple questions about your background: you have a solid formal training and you graduated with an BA (Hons) of Fine Art in Painting and Printmaking: how has this experience influenced your evolution as an artist? And in particular, how does your cultural substratum inform the way you relate yourself with art

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making and with the aesthetic problem in general?

The first year or two was hard, coming straight from a high school setting to full time in a studio was a pretty daunting transition for me which was probably a lot to do with my age. I guess I was just very insecure about being wrong or not being good enough. Being constantly surrounded by other artists in the same studio for four years inevitably influences your practice on both a practical and theoretical level because you have so many different banks of knowledge and experience at your disposal. Making art has always been a tool for me to try and derive answers to the bigger questions that I have come across in my growth and experiences. It has always been imperative to explore something that is, at the core, honest and personal to me. You are a versatile artist and you incorporate a lot of media in your works, showing an organic synergy between a variety of expressive capabilities. Before starting to elaborate about your production, we would suggest to our readers to visit http://www.rachelsduffy.com in order to get a synoptic view of your


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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.

It’s definitely an important factor of my exploration. The medium a work takes on is usually determined by the potential I feel the source has - whether that is a piece text or a photograph. I work a lot with this idea of masquerading gender and thinking about the way in which people adapt to different surroundings like the location and company – and how they may change their personality, cosmetics and clothing to suit that. Thinking about theorists like Joan Riviere, and her text Womanliness of Masquerade, poses an interesting idea about sexuality and gender and this interlinks a lot with my thoughts on masquerade and how we play with our identities. I think the multidisciplinary approach acts as a reflection of this as well as a reflection of my personality and work method. For this special issue of ARTiculAction we have selected your recent Self Portrait series, a stimulating project that our readers have already started to get to know in the introductory pages of this article. What has at once caught our attention of your inquiry into the files of sel portraiture is the way it accomplishes the difficult task of creating a channel of communication between the conscious sphere and the subconscious sphere. When walking our

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Untitled, 2015 installation

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Untitled, 2015 Installation

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Rachel Duffy


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readers through the genesis of Self Portrait series, would you shed a light about the role of metaphors in your process?

I like to play around a lot working with the contrast between the grotesque and the ideal. It is pertinent to my practice to explore the dirtier and residual side of cosmetics as a way in which to neutralise the positive and the negatives of the subject matter. Creating something idealistic out of the everyday “throwaway” materials engages the viewer in a conversation about what really is beautiful and brings me back to the idea of masquerading gender and how we re-create and produce a version of ourselves we consider to be more acceptable. The installation of the hair pieces represents the repetitive nature of the way fashion chain-reacts from person to person and being of a very relevant style to our generation is suggestive of the way we change our appearances. I think it’s important for me to address the use of text within some of the pieces. In the portrait series it was important to draw attention to every aspect of my daily face making process - each drawing being the equivalent to an aspect of time in our lives. The drawing with the phone at the end concludes the story as an act of validation – for example the posting of a picture to Facebook or the sending of a Snapchat – you are ready for the world to see your version of yourself for that day. Your work could be also considered a challenging interrogation of traditional

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portraiture: as Philippe Dagen once established in his Le Silence des peintres, the coming of a straight realism has caused a progressive retenchment of painting from the mere representetive role of reality. With exception of Hyperrealism movement, visual arts are nowadays more and more marked out with a symbolic feature. Do you think that the dichotomy between Representation and Visualization is by now irremediable?

It is hard because in this culture everyone is an artist. The saturation of the art world has created a situation where the artist is fearful that his or her work will have no meaning and thus no impact. It has built insecurity in that there is expectancy that for your art to be successful it must stem from some profound idea. And from the other side, as a viewer, the art world can be a daunting place. There is a desire to understand art and this will inevitably lead them to find a meaning in the work that may or may not have been intended. I guess, in conclusion, there is an all round insecurity that clouds art making and in this day and age we are constantly seeking validation and I think a lot of that has changed with the progression of accessibility of things like the Internet. Your inquiry into the notion of beauty resists to immediate classifications and seems to communicate the idea that Art is a vehicle not only to express feelings and concepts, but to also dissect them, grapple with them,

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Untitled, 2013 Installation

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Untitled, 2013 Hair dye on towel

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and integrate them. How did you decide to explore this form of expression?

All of my work stems from my own insecurities in terms of my identity. Everything I explore is something I haven’t been able to understand or make sense of. I don’t think I could have ever made a practice out of an abstract concept because I want my work to be honest and truthful to me not only as an artist, but also as an individual. The fruible set of elements you draw from universal imagery 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?

For me, the function of the work begins with the artist as it allows for a personal exploration of something that is important to them. I don’t believe the artist should be making with the intent to impose an idea or an opinion on the viewer because how we look at art and absorb it is personal to everyone. I mean looking back at that idea of everyone is an artist; the function of art isn’t as precious as it used to be. There is so much material out there, with so many over-lapping ideas that, in my opinion, the authenticity of this can only be true to the artist. When exploring the obsession behind how we look ourselves and how we look

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at others, you seem to address the viewers to get free of the constraints that affect contemporary unstable societies. Many artists from the contemporary scene, as Judy Chicago or more recently Jennifer Linton, use to include socio- political criticism in their works. It is not unusual that an artist, rather than urging the viewer to take a personal position on a subject, tries to convey his personal take about the major issues that affect contemporary age. Do you consider that your works are political in this way or do you seek to maintain a neutral approach? Do you feel that it’s your responsibility as an artist to teach and raise awareness of certain issues?

I try to maintain a neutral approach because I can relate to both the positive and negatives of the subject. However, there is so much negativity surrounding the industry I think it is important to consider the positives and it is refreshing for me to be able to think about the way in which it impacts our personal growth and identities. Something that we invest so much time and money in presents an important topic for exploration and conversation. That’s really what I’m trying to do – start a conversation. Everybody is different and everybody will have their own personal investment in the subject so I think it’s important to leave room for the viewer to be able to understand it in a context that is valuable to them. I don’t think as an artist there is a responsibility to teach but I do agree

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Untitled, 2015 Installation

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Untitled, 2015 Installation

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that it is a way of raising awareness of topics that the viewer may not have considered before. To me, art is a learning process for the artist through an exploration of their reality. What the viewer can or will take from somebody’s work is secondary to that and whilst that is important it is not pertinent to my art making. Making art is just the way I choose to explore the bigger issues because it makes sense to me. Your successful attempt to produce a dialectical fusion that operates as a system of symbols, including written language, creates a compelling non linear narrative that, walking the thin line between conceptual and literal meanings, establishes direct relations with the viewers. German multidisciplinary artist Thomas Demand once stated that "nowadays art can no longer rely so much on symbolic strategies and has to probe psychological, narrative elements within the medium instead". What is your opinion about it? And in particular how do you conceive the narrative for your works?

I think this definitely holds true for the situation we are in now within this generation – particularly with the Internet evolving the way it has. For my work it is really important because the materials I choose to use convey ideas that couldn’t be shown solely through traditional medium. The idea of taking materials that cut a fine line between tacky and glamorous became important to my practice in order to create a contrast between the naïve and the

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sincere. The comparison between them allows me to create a space that draws the viewer into a situation that is not always as idealistic as it may seem. The uses of the residual mediums like make-up cleansing wipes and nail clippings, which you notice as you engage closer with the work, begins a conversation between the viewer and the artist because they are relatable materials. Drawing ideas from consumer culture is a comforting aspect of the work and this works in parallel with the narrative that my work tells. This comes directly from the people I’m surrounded by and have been surrounded by growing up, in school, in university and in work. It is important that my work resonates with them because that is my reality and where my experiences have come from. Over these years you works have been exhibited in several occasions, including your recent participation to the group exhibition All You Can Eat, at The Old Truman Brewery, London. Your work is strictly connected to the chance of establishing a direct involvement with the viewers, who are called to evolve from a mere spectatorship to conscious participants on an intellectual level, so before leaving this conversation I would like to pose a question about the nature of the relationship of your art with your audience. Do you consider the issue of audience reception as being a

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crucial component of your decisionmaking process, in terms of what type of language is used in a particular context?

I suppose I think about the way in which the language is a comforting aspect of the work. It appeals to my generation and the culture we are in. It also creates a discomfort for older generations who may not understand it or relate to it quite as directly and that really highlights this progression of culture. Fashion and trends move everything along so quickly – and this will only continue to speed up – and I try to express a lot of that in the medium and style in which the work is produced. 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?

Predicting the future of my work is hard for me. I guess the work will evolve in the same way I evolve as a person and who I am surrounded by. Trends and fashion will inevitably restructure my practice and the evolution of culture will appear throughout the work. An interview by Dario Rutigliano, curator and Melissa Hilborn, curator articulaction@post.com


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M arion Tu Lives and works in Houston, USA

An artist's statement

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oming from a multicultural and multilingual background, Marion's work explores the cultural transversality of images and emotions. Born in Paris, France, and of Chinese descent, Marion has lived in 6 countries across 3 continents. Her practice derives from a constant state of cultural shock and explores the notions of fluctuating identity and métissage. Working through the relationship between memory and space, her practice serves as an exploration of her own psychogeographical maps and themes. It can be seen as a collection of traces of places, and fragments of emotions and memories, in which melancholy and nostalgia often play a part. Marion recently relocated to the U.S. and started investigating the modern shapeshifting notion of home. From a romanticized childhood vision to the growing appeal of living a certain lifestyle, Marion’s latest productions look into the permeability of the American home to marketing techniques. She is fascinated by how the different layers of the

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collective imagery of home, made of elements of intimacy, safety and comfort, are being recontextualised for consumerist purposes. By creating narratives and sculptural interventions in overlooked community areas, Marion starts the process of reclaiming the physical spaces we individually and collectively inhabit but sometimes fail to invest in. She uses found material and re-purposed objects to act as catalysts for the generation of new personal stories and the activation of our collective memory. Marion’s practice is predominantly sitespecific and involves a range of diverse media such as photography, soundscape, video, intervention, and performance. Marion is the co-founder of the curatorial project North & Found and a member of the alternative art school ‘altMFA’, based in London, England.

Marion Tu


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

Highly stimulating in its multifaceted nature, Solo movements - part 2 is a captivating experimental work by artist Marion Tu. While walking the viewers through an unconventional investigation about the notion of improvisation, Tu accomplishes the difficult task of unveiling how harmony can emerge from a state of friction, to challenge the viewers' perceptual parameters, urging them to explore the transversality of emotions and images. What mostly impressed of Tu's work is the way her exploration of the different cultural representation and perceptions of home provokes reflection about contemporary age draawing the viewers into an unconventional and multilayered journey. We are particularly pleased to introduce our readers to her multifaceted artistic production. Hello Marion and welcome to ARTiculAction: to start this interview, we would like to pose you a couple of questions about your background. You have a solid formal traning and you hold a M.A. in Intercultural Management, and you are currently pursuing your MFA: how do these experiences influence the way you conceive and produce your works? In particular, how does your multilingual

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

I grew up speaking several languages and surrounded with people and family members from different countries and backgrounds. I am half French, half Chinese, with family living in Mexico and Hong Kong. For me, art started as a way of escaping the confusion of languages and became a constructive way of investigating the different aspects of my identity. With art, I could no longer be lost in translation or wonder where I stood in the midst of cultures and countries. I was mostly painting at that time and painting, the exploration of textures, shapes, and colors, worked as a sort of playground where I could experiment with different elements of my cultural background freely. Another factor that plays an important part in my practice is that, in French and Chinese traditions, art making is at the center of society but in diametrically opposed ways. In Europe, the image of the starving, misunderstood artist is still very much alive, and so is the notion that the source of creation derives from extreme states of distress. In China, to be an artist, you need to have reached a state of detachment, of stillness of the mind, in order to be allowed to create. It is a path of patience and silence.


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Navigating this paradox, esthetically and conceptually, within my own practice is an ongoing process, especially since I keep adding new external elements, by living and making work in different countries and art environments. You are a versatile artist and your approach encapsulates several techniques that ranges from installation and painting to videodance and sound, revealing a stimulating search of an organic symbiosis between a variety of viewpoints. The results convey together a coherent sense of unity, that rejects any conventional classification. Before starting to elaborate about your production, we would suggest to our readers to visit http://www.mariontu.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 approach is the only way to express and convey the idea you explore.

I honestly never thought I would be making sound works or videos when I first started. My first medium was painting. I saw myself as a "traditional artist" who was going to be a painter for the rest of my life. But I met artists who took pictures, made videos, and played with sound. I realised that is was fairly easy nowadays to experiment with new media because buying expensive equipment or taking technical courses was no longer required. Now that I work across disciplines, I know that there is a right medium for every idea. I recently did a short video about life in gated

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communities. The concept was based on the repetition of a few key words belonging to the semantic fields used by the real estate industry. Once I edited the video, I realised it failed to convey the vision I had about it. I am still trying to figure out if a moving image, or a simple soundtrack would be more


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adequate. Each medium comes with their possibilities and limitations. Throughout history, art making has been closely linked to technical discoveries so it only makes sense that contemporary artists are now expanding their processes to work across different mediums.

For this special issue of ARTiculAction we have selected Solo movements - part 2, a stimulating experimental dance video performance that our readers have already stared to get to know in the introductory pages of this article. What has at once caught our attention of this project is the way your inquiry

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into the relationship between harmony and improvisation: when walking our readers through the genesis of Solo movements - part 2, would you shed a light about your main inspiration and how did you developed the initial idea?

Solo movements - part 2 is the second video dance I made with dancer Agnes

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Grelinger. As a dancer, Agnes is fascinated with improvisation. As an artist, I was interested in the idea of filming unchoreographed movements. The first video we made together was a sort of introduction to the challenge that is filming the moving body. Especially when your interest lies in


Marion Tu

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filming a dancer moving freely and you are not acquainted with their dance rhythm nor style. Filming dancing is very difficult as it requires the dancer and videographer to understand each other's vision and processes. The videographer needs to have an almost intimate notion of the dancer's moves in

order to film it properly. So the first video was an exploration of the rawness that comes from not having that knowledge. We decided to do a second video when I was doing a residency at the Floating Island gallery, in London, in 2014. My studio space was in an empty office building. The concept of the video was simple and similar to the first video: we would get into the space, she would start dancing and I would start filming. The only difference being that, in the first video, Agnes danced in her dance studio, and in the second video, I filmed her in my studio space. After filming, I put the project aside for a while, waiting for the right time to edit it. It is only a few months later that I recorded the soundtrack for it. I was in Lisbon, Portugal, when my friend Rui Bordรกdagua, who was learning to play the guitar, started playing the music of the video. I found the piece matched the raw yet elegant dance sequence. I was also curious about the resonance and dissonance that could develop when a dancer dances to an imperfect song they had never heard. I think my interest for this sort of sensory friction comes from the realisation that our modern consumerist culture is increasingly based on visual stimulation, resulting in a heavily formatted visual culture. Everyday, we are bombarded by perfectly edited pictures, we curate our lives on social media using filters and composing pictures so that they become eye-pleasing. To me, cultivating different aesthetics, provoking reactions that broaden our sensory specter is really important.

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The performative aspect of Solo movements - part 2 and the reference to the idea of unknown environment invites the viewers to a multilayered experience: in particular, the way you explore the ambivalent relation between the intrinsically ephemeral nature of the performance and the sense of permanence suggested by the idea of environment, accomplishes the difficult task of constructing a concrete aesthetic from experience, working on both subconscious and conscious level. So we would take this occasion to ask you if in your opinion personal experience is absolutely indispensable as part of the creative process? Do you think that a creative process could be disconnected from direct experience?

I think artists can, to a certain extent, disconnect themselves from their personal experience and work from rational and scientific approaches. But in the end, we are always at the center of the creative process: we initiate and complete it so we are always there. Only a computer could create work that is 100% impersonal (like the Deep Neural Network) and then, we would ask ourselves if it really is art. I guess there is also a difference between starting from personal experience and using personal experience in your work. When we use personal experience, we risk getting too absorbed in it resulting in potentially excluding the viewer. It is important to find the line between a personal work and an hermetic one. In my opinion, it is crucial to leave room for the viewer to engage with it. Solo movements - part 2 also provides the viewers with an intense, immersive experience: how do you see the

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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?

This is a huge question so I will use an example to answer. To begin with, my current practice is mostly site-specific. You cannot really get a more immersive experience than when you create a piece for a specific location. Two years ago, I created a site-specific ephemeral intervention on a beach of South London, as part of an art festival called Art Licks Weekend. At the time, I was exploring the idea of homesickness and longing for home. I had moved from Portugal to England, and the idea of saudade appealed a lot to me. Saudade is an untranslatable Portuguese word that alludes to something that is no longer and might never be again. It is closed to nostalgia and melancholy but it contains more light and hope. My idea was to make participants feel saudade. I created the work using site-specific elements and working by steps to add layers of emotions that would take participants to feel saudade. First, participants were able to see the beach from the pier and embraced the cityscape made of Tower bridge, old and reassuring, and the new modern construction of East London. Participants then walked down the stairs and started walking on the gravel. The sound of their footsteps, of the river waves were elements that were supposed to contribute to their "conditioning". The actual intervention consisted in pieces of cotton cloth


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buried on the beach. On them, I had handwritten with charcoal what saudade felt like for Portuguese immigrants I had interviewed. Most pieces were in English, with some in Portuguese and others left empty. Once participants were on the beach, I had envisioned them walking around, looking on the gravel for apparent pieces of cloth, then carefully releasing the pieces with big arm gestures. Well, in the end, nothing worked as I had planned. It started raining and although I had thought about what the rain would alter, it completely changed the work. I imagined that if it rained, people would simply spent less time looking for the messages buried in the gravel. But because people were hiding under their umbrellas, their field of view was limited by the frame of the umbrella and they did not pay attention to the cityscape. They also did not really hear the river waves because of the sound of the rain drops on the umbrella. Finally, because the gravel was wet, they did not really want to touch the piece of cloth buried. So their gestures, the choreography I had imagined, did not end up being elegant at all, but quite the opposite. You could see people were quite displeased with having to touch the wet ground. All in all, I would say that whether it is in the creative process, or when people receive the work, you need to accept that not matter how much you imagined and planned an artwork, there will always be a floating area. Another interesting body of works from your recent production that has particularly impacted on us and on

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Marion Tu


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which we would like to spend some words is entitled The gated community: in particular, we have highly appreciated the way The Swag Bag accomplishes an insightful inquiry into the notion of home, playing with symbols, as well as to reminders to the everyday. German multidisciplinary artist Thomas Demand once stated that "nowadays art can no longer rely so much on symbolic strategies and has to probe psychological, narrative elements within the medium instead". What is your opinion about it? And in particular how do you conceive the narrative and especially the visual unity for your works?

It is true that symbolic strategies are no longer the only strategies used by artists. In the Swag Bag, I delivered strange, almost normal looking objects on the doorstep of residents of a gated community, in Houston. These objects all talked about home and held power because they were directly inserted within the reality they pointed at. From there, the residents were totally free to imagine who put the bag there, what were the objects, what they meant, and decide how they related to them. Psychological and narrative elements structured the work but so did the strong symbolism of the house / the home that the work played on. Our personal memory and collective imagination is made of symbols. Symbols are inherent to any artwork, and often used as catalysts for those psychological and narrative elements we are talking about. Your works, as the interesting performative piece entitled Quilting a new blanket for winter, often induce

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the viewers to abandon themselves to free associations: when artists leaves thier works open to interpretation, it is like giving the viewer permission to see anything in your works without anyone ever being wrong. Has that ever proven to be a problem?

I am pleased you saw that in my work. Leaving "the viewers to abandon themselves to free associations" as you said is exactly what I try to do. So if the viewer's interpretation is far from my intent, I see it as a way of starting new conversations and learn about viewers' perceptions and points of view. If you take the performance "Quilting a new blanket for winter", it was part of "Palindromic sequence", an art walk organised in London last year, by the collective altMFA. Some people who walked by me knew it was an art performance, and others, who were just passing by, had to guess or ask. For this piece, I received very different feedbacks and whether people knew it was art or not did not really change their approach. The performance consisted of me wearing a shawl of coupons, and sewing in a quilt pattern, a blanket made of coupons while listening to radio commercials in several languages. I also offered participants coupons embroidered with wool. The feedback I received was very interesting. Some people thought I was denouncing the paper waste created by supermarket paper brochures, others saw me as a crazy catless cat lady. I was really happy people came up with these different interpretations. It fed my imagination and made me think of further works. I am not going to explain my intention with the work here

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Marion Tu


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because to me, once the artwork is out, it no longer belongs to the artist. It's no doubt that interdisciplinary collaborations as the ones you have established with Agnes Grélinger and Rui Bordadágua for Solo movements part 2, as well as Daeseronide that you created with musician John Galindonare today ever growing forces in Contemporary Art and that 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? By the way, Peter Tabor once stated that "collaboration is working together with another to create something as a synthesis of two practices, that alone one could not": what's your point about this? Can you explain how your work demonstrates communication between several artists?

Peter Tabor summarises collaboration very well. To me, working with collaboratively is like creating a third practice altogether. Every artist's practice is unique. So working with someone who uses different mediums following different processes is thrilling. You mentioned « Daeseronide », a sound work I created with John Galindo. John is a jazz musician who plays several instruments. As far as I was concerned, I had been collecting sounds on and off for several years. I was waiting for an opportunity to use them and explore how ideas could be expressed with sounds. We decided to collaborate quite spontaneously. The concept of the piece is the one of the exquisite corpse, invented by the

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Surrealists. We simply move the concept from drawing and writing to sound. John gave me the first sound and we built it up from there. Little by little, you can see that we become more confident and fully use the sounds we choose, by creating repetitions, layers and spoken words. This is the beauty of collaboration, growing the practice together. I am also currently working with 3 female artists Ruth Connelly (Ireland), Camilla Greenwell (UK) and Paula Bourke-Girgis (Germany). We have been writing on a shared document for over a year now with only one rule, to remember where we wrote. None of us know what the final project will look like yet, but the simple process is already quite stimulating. Collaborating is key to me because it is always more fun working with people rather than alone and it takes you away from your personal practice only to regenerate, and enrich it. Over these years you works have been internationally exhibited in several occasions, including your recent participation at the Youthitude Festival, in Berlin. One of the hallmarks of your works is the capability to establish direct relation with the audience, deleting any conventional barrier between the idea you explore and who receipt and consequently elaborate them. So before taking leave from this interesting conversation I would like to pose a a question about the nature of the relation with your audience: in particular, do you consider the issue of audience reception as being a crucial component of your decision-making process in terms of what type of language for a particular context?

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Marion Tu


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Yes, the audience reception is crucial to me. I think it has always been but it became even more relevant since I cofounded a curatorial project called North & Found. Once you start the process of talking to artists and designing shows and events so that the viewers engage with the works, it is hard not to make the same process for your work. But it is a concern that only comes later in my decision-making process. I first focus on whether it makes sense to me and if the language I chose is appropriate and relevant to my current practice and then I move to the audience reception. Thanks a lot for your time and for sharing your thoughts, Marion: would you like to tell us readers something about your future projects? How do you see your work evolving?

My practice usually works in cycles. I create work, show it and get feedback, pause for a moment, and start again. Since I moved to Houston last year, my practice has shifted a lot. Texas is a fascinating place and an incredible source of ideas, especially when you are interested in site-specific works and new to the U.S.. So right now I am concentrating on stage 1 of my cycle, that is developing a new body of work and experimenting with new processes. I do not want to say too much about what I am working on because when I do, it tends to not work out. I probably became a little superstitious! I just know I want to develop more sound walks and textbased projects. An interview by Dario Rutigliano, curator and Melissa Hilborn, curator articulaction@post.com

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Huanglu Shi Lives and works in London, United Kingdom

An artist's statement

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hen I was four years old, I had a near death experience while having an open heart surgery. My heart stopped beating, my body temperature went low, a heart-lung machine kept me alive. Coming back from that threshold, I knew that opposites are bound together and that I encompass both. It left me fascinated with edges and yearning for meaning. My works are born from that same simultaneous sense of vertigo and stability. They deal with a dichotomous - the realization that one reality can reflect many and there is no one definition. The truth is endlessly evolving and expanding. I try and reconcile conflicts and contradictions such as beauty that encompasses crudeness, weakness as a source of strength and disillusionment that feeds innocence. The early works (“Red Heart”, 2007-09) are naïve drawings of bodies and situations, subtle yet disturbing. Minimalist figures floating in white space. With time, layers appear

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(“Illusions & Reality”, 2010-13). Through intricate drawings and installations I struggle to weave together the past, present and future. Recently I’m fascinated with transformation (“Release”, 2014-15). The Sisyphean process evolved to a new set of rules, which dictates different materials, gestures and speed. The new paintings are large and expressive, made in one continuous session, like an intense ritual. I see my studio as a cross between a womb and a lab. My practice is a tool for understanding myself as well as the world of phenomena around me. My goal is to generate a change that shapes perspectives and actions, thus enabling for something new to occur - symbolically, conceptually and tangibly. I have a distinct feeling that there is something beyond me, a life force, which I can’t put into words but I can channel into art.

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

Artist Huanglu Shi's work is marked with an effective performative feature to explore the notions of memory, experience and physical gestures. Her approach rejects any conventional classification: in her work entitled I DO NOT CARE WHO SAY ME that we'll be discussing in the following pages, she accomplishes an insightful exploration of the relationship between private space and public space, to establish a multilayered involvement with the viewers, who are urged to investigate about a variety of aspects that pervade contemporary societies. One of the most convincing aspects of Shi's practice is the way it creates a deep synergy between our limbic parameters and our rational categories: we are very pleased to introduce our readers to her compelling artistic production. Hello Huanglu 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 having degreed from the Xi’an Academic College of Arts and having set up you SHILU studio, you moved to UK to join the MA of Fine Arts program at the prestigious earned University of The

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Huanglu Shi


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Arts London: how have these experiences influenced your evolution as an artist? And in particular, how does the relationship between your cultural substratum dued to your Chinese roots and your life experience in the UK inform the way you relate yourself to art making and to the aesthetic problem in general?

Hi, it's my pleasure to join you guys and I am very happy to share something with others. About my background, I was born in a small city in China, and my father is an artist as well. I was enrolled in a basic art program when I was 14 years old. To be an artist has always been my dream for life. However, it seems that something changed when I went into Xi’an Academic College of Arts. My course was Printmaking, and I studied Oil painting at the same time. During my BA, I was surprised to find out that not all of the art students love art and are ready to commit their lives to art like me. I also found out that nebulous but strict limits are set on art as artistic freedom in China is still an issue. Confronting this reality, the BA research period was not easy for me, but I am still grateful for these difficulties because since then my goal has become clearer and I learned how to struggle for them. I made an important decision when I finished my BA degree, and went aboard for future art research. My first performance art work was made in London. It is a good place for art as “weirdness” is championed. The UK education system about art brings more advantages to art students, because art

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students play the main role in the relationship between tutors and students. My education background underpins my art works in academic ways, and my experience brings me inspirations and ideas. For example, the gallery is a helpful place to artists where we make communications with others’ art works, getting more thoughts. However I prefer to get more experience by seeing different kinds of people, because everyone carries different stories that I cannot find in gallery. To be honest, western countries are much better for artists than China, it is not about ass-kiss. I do love my homeland, and Chinese culture has unique characters, but the development of art still lags behind ,especially in the area of performance art. The relationship between politics and art i subtle. It gives me a feeling: the Chinese political authority is parenting Chinese art in terms of controlling what art should do and not. For example, artists are to use senior Chinese officials’ portraits as artistic elements. So I would like to develop my art overseas if possible, because western countries offer my art a better and safe nest. Your approach to performance reveals an unconventional search of organic symbiosis between a variety of viewpoints. The results convey together a consistent sense of harmony. Before starting to elaborate about your production, we would suggest to our readers to visit https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCE ct4M0QrxHS796-c3N0E5A in order to get a synoptic view of your

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multifaceted artistic production: while walking our readers through your process, we would like to ask you what has lead you to choose performance to express the ideas you explore.

Me: My pervious course was Printmaking. For me, it’s not direct enough to express my artistic ideas. I was enrolled in Fine Art when I moved in London. At the very beginning, I tried to make innovations on my oil painting works, in order to find a direct way to express my messages. One day, I asked myself what can I do if I abandon my brushes and pigment inks. Then I made a decision to venture into performance art . It does not mean that oil painting is totally absent from my art, on the opposite, art performance has brought something new to my oil paintings. I moved art actions on my canvas, and it feels like that I am making a rehearsal in my mind. When I extend my canvas art to art performance, I excitedly found that my previous courses really make sparks with performance art. In my work I AM A PENCIL https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Onl 0dc39VCY I make a shift of positionality with pencil. In my point of view, this art work presents my situation between paintings and art tools. For this special edition of ARTiculAction we have selected I DO NOT CARE WHO SAY ME, an extremely interesting work that our readers have that our readers have already started to get to know in the introductory pages of this article. This work capture non-sharpness with an universal kind of language, capable of bringing the notion of behavior to a

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new level of significance: would you shed light on the genesis of this project? What was your initial inspiration and how did you decide to develop your main idea?

Me: The genesis of this project is about rising a question to the audience and myself. From my point of view, there are thousands of grey degrees between


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white and black, and it is hard to say which grey degree is the boundary line between black and white. The relationship between black and white is similar with the relationship between private space and public space. So the idea is that I would do an art performance concerning the relationship between private space and

public space One scene of ordinary life brought me an inspiration: one day morning, I was sitting on my seat of the underground from London Bridge to North Greenwich, and the lady nearby was putting make-up on her face. The behavior of making up was really attractive for me, and when I looked around, no one around her paid any

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attention. I made an survey on the second day, because I would like to know people’s thoughts about the behavior of making up on the train or tube, and the result showed that many people actually feel unhappy with this behavior, because they feel weird about people who do personal things in public. The art works I have done

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before I DO NOT CARE WHO SAY ME are all made in home, and I filmed my private life scenes and published them by camera. However their touch on the theme of the public/private boundary is not powerful enough for me. I DO NOT CARE WHO SAY ME is a successful attempt to explore the


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relationship between private space and public space in an unconventional still effective way: as you have remarked once, this performance happened in various spaces in London. The reaction of viewers was shocked: how do you see the relationship between public sphere and the role of art in public space?

From my point of view, there is no absolutely public space in our life. I may need to talk about the relationship between black and white again, as I suppose that there is not a black degree called absolutely black, and the same for white. As the time goes, we get more and more knowledge about the world, even though we still have no idea about the whole world, and it remains mysterious. As civilisations develop, people push the boundaries between private space and public space by themselves, such as lovers and couples kissing in parks, people having sex in club toilets, or in fitting rooms in shopping malls. Actually the behaviors of people are fuzzing the weak boundary between private space and public space unconsciously. People feel excited when moving sexual activities (personal thing) to semi-public spaces, but they definitely feel surprised and shocked when art presents the truth more directly. When art performances happened in the public space, it means artists would like to share their opinions with the public and gather the reactions from the audience. Public space is like a laboratory for artists where we experiment in anticipation for magical happenings. Besides, the reactions from the audience are different when art performances happened in different circumstances. The audience of I DO NOT CARE WHO SAY ME were shocked and yet they pretended that nothing happened, while some of them were still peeping me. For my recent work SEE ME, I got huge responses in Greenwich Park,where people were taking the videos and pictures during

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the process of my performance, and somebody even asked me questions about my project. So In my opinion, the role of art in public is different for each project and their respective context, but in most of my works. In public,my art is talking my stories and my theories with force,I force others to look at me in my way. What has at once caught our attention of your approach 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 categories and to draw the viewers into a multilayered 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?

I think personal experience has an indispensable relation with art. Different experience make different personalities and characters. Experiences from outside have profound impact on inner phycology, which in turn has crucial effects on the creation of art. What’s more, I think childhood experiences have significant effects on personality. When I was a child, my parents were busy for their work, the lack of attention has influenced my personality, and I think it will continue to influence my art in the future. Every

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detail of the performance carries the effects of artist’s experience. Another interesting project of yours that has particularly impacted on us and on which we would like to spend some words is entitled MADE IN CHINA: we definitely love the way you extract the visual feature of


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information about the variety of stereotypes that affect Chinese production, cheap and easy-to-destroy: 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?

About the statement of German artist Thomas Demand, I have the same feeling about the current situation of art: there are too much materials are involved in art. Art materials are helpful to achieve what artist would like to

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say,for example in my work of MADE IN CHINA,I use the literal material, because it is more easy to present what I would like to display. However I do think artistic independence is important and materialistic concerns should not take over artistic intentions, otherwise art would become chaotic. I present the narrative during the process of performance.

art, then I created this work to express my feelings about this tension. I would like to use memory as a starting point to create and it does offer me great thoughts and ideas, helping my works gain more influences and elements. Before doing my art, I try to throw basic art skills away, because there is not any skill in art, what I should remember in my bone is passion and sincerity.

The ambience that pervades your artistic production reveals an unconventional symbiosis between the ephemeral ideas you convey in your works and their intrinsic tactile nature, suggesting a process of recpntextialization of the notions of time 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.

Your works sometimes induce the viewers to abandon themselves to personal associations: when artists leaves their works open to interpretation, it is like giving the viewer permission to see anything in your works without anyone ever being wrong. Has that ever proven to be a problem?

Memory plays a significant role in my artistic creation. To be honest, the experience in Xi’an Academic College of Art still has important effect on me and my art. The memory of the four years of education there lends a kind of critical power. For example, in my art work MADE IN CHINA, the concern is about my memory of Chinese production, and different people have different evaluation systems to productions that made in China. Before I created the work MADE IN CHINA,I rethought my memory about Chinese productions and the relationship between Chinese politics and Chinese

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In my work SEE ME, MADE IN CHINA and I DO NOT CARE WHO SAY ME, I leave a very open space to the audience, and they have rights to own their opinions and judgements. It is not a problem for me at all. MADE IN CHINA is a good example, one of my viewers asked me one question: “why you make yourself so cheap?” Actually the aim of this work is to present a kind of truth to the public, and I would like my art to make others reflect. In MADE IN CHINA, i was wearing a shirt made in China, painted with the Chinese flag, and then I printed MADE IN CHINA in the cloth, the Chinese flag and my own body. All of these objects are made in China. Everyone has their own point of view with regards to my work, that is what i would like to see, and I won’t limit the interpretation of my art.


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Over these years you have exhibited in several occasions both in China and around the London's scene: 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?

Me: When I exhibit my art works in China, I would like to present my oil paintings, because it is not a good and free environment for art performance there. In China, traditional and classic oil paintings are more acceptable for the audience. It’s a shame for Chinese art, so I have a suggestion: Performance art should get a place in academic art colleges of China. Chinese art colleges have courses about Oil painting, printmaking, traditional Chinese painting and sculpture, however these courses are not all of art. The art students’ knowledge and the understanding of art should be broader, and they need to move out from basic academic painting skills. What they should research is not how to paint or resemble the object as it appears. What’s more, these painting skills may prevent us from catching the nature of art. In western countries, I never need to consider too much when I am chasing my art ideal. I hope the language of my

art is sincere and real so that all the people in the world could feel. Thanks a lot for your time and for sharing your thoughts, Huanglu. Finally, would you like to tell us readers something about your future projects? How do you see your work evolving?

Me: Thank you for your patience. I have a new exhibition with some artists in July and the exhibition location is in London. I will present a new live art performance then, the name of new art work is MASK. In the opening day, I am going to cover my whole body with thin plastic wrap, and people can still see through it as I wear it. I will brush white pigment on my face, so that nobody could recognize who I am. During the process, I will act like an audience member for a while, by standing and walking among them. After a while, I will act like a clown with clumsy actions. However it depends on the situation. In my art works, sometimes I changed my performance plan according to different situations. I may bring something surprising to my art. In this work, what I would like to say is that we are wearing less and less while nobody could recognize us. We play different roles in front of different people, too many identities confuse us and we could not recognize ourselves sometimes.

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

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S hahar Afek Lives and works in Tel Aviv, Israel

An artist's statement

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edia and technology create an infinite abundance of unrelated images, leading to sterilization of the images, voiding them of meaning. Distinctions between these outcomes and reality blur, the image is superior to reality. This assumption drives me in my work. My work begins with the products of photography, continuing with montage, sculpture and installation. Building constructions and employing various screening techniques enables me to ponder the perception of time, space and reality. My everyday space makes me wonder about its existence and essence. In this day and age, when

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space is not just a perceptible concept, I am drawn to study the virtual experience and the way people function within it. At times, the viewer becomes party to the work, even without being aware of this in advance. As forms of experience become increasingly flat, the simultaneous, what is near and what is far, inner and outer, borders and what is dispersed and situating human beings in the fragile space are some of the strata I address through my work. Concrete and imaginary worlds combine and reorganize themselves, a world within a world within a world. Shahar Afek


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

Tel Aviv based artist Shahar Afek's work explores a variety of issues that affects our everchanging societies and his multidisciplinary approach allows him to unveil unexpected aspects of the conflictual relationship between the notion of reality and our perceptual processes. In his recent project entitled Untitled Horizon that we'll be discussing in the following pages he center his exploration about the sterilization of the images in the contemporary age, to address the viewers to a multilayered investigaton. One of the most convincing aspect of Afek's approach is the way it accomplishes an insightful inquiry into the realms of memory, experience and perception to show umpredictable consequences of our technology driven era: we are really pleased to introduce our readers to his stimulating artistic production . Hello Shahar and welcome to ARTiculAction :to start this interview we would pose you a couple of introductory questions about your background? You have a solid formal training and you studied Fine Arts and Photography at the Minshar School of Art, Tel-Aviv and you also nurtured your education with a B.A from the faculty of Humanities, The Open University: how have these experiences influenced your evolution as an artist? And in particular, how does your cultural substratum inform the way you relate yourself to artmaking?

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Shahar Afek


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I’m very happy to be here. Academic institutions have the capacity to develop and strengthen young artists’ abilities and passions, but they can also be repressive. When I came to Minshar to study art, I had a great deal of passion but a limited knowledge of the art world. At Minshar I was able to be myself and also develop my intellectual and professional skills. The lecturers were very supportive, and helped me to transcend the boundaries of photography as a medium, both conceptually and technologically. At the Open University, I mainly studied film, social and cultural studies. These subjects influence my way of thinking, as well as the decisions I make during the creative process. My generation - Generation Y – grew up into a world of rapid technological developments in computers, internet and mobile phones, and is capable of dividing attention between several actions. Israel is a small and intense place, and there is a lot of political - as well as social and cultural - pressure. Israeli artists tend to integrate political aspects in their work. I think that there are gaps between desire and intent in our lives and in the creative process, as well as between declarations and actions. There is an escapist aspect to my work process and to what I produce; most of the places and the aesthetics of my work are not Israeli per se. Your hybrid approach to art production involves photography, montage, sculpture and installation, revealing an effective investigation about the notion of space and the way we relate ourselves to such elusive concept in the contemporary age, urging the viewers to question a familiar notion could establish an unconventional relationship with their limbic parameters. Before starting to elaborate about your production, we would suggest to our readers to visit

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http://www.shaharafek.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 develope your style and how do you conceive your works.

During my second year of studies, I started to feel that straight photography isn’t adequate for raising questions and addressing the issues that interest me. While I cook for people, I use several senses simultaneously. I think that this quality, which originates from attention disorders, accompanies my work and my desire to integrate several different media. I enjoy photographing, but in this age of visual abundance there is something not quite satisfactory in the products of photography, and the flat product creates a divide between the viewer and the work itself. I seek opportunities where the viewer is an active partner, and encounters a multisensory experience. Everyday architectural, social and cultural structures, memories, traumas and fantasies are represented by images affect me in choosing a theme for my work. I then move on to tests, attempts and intuitive connections in the exhibition space, in my studio and in public spaces. My creative process usually begins by wandering, travelling around the world and accumulating a large amount of raw material for my work. Digitalization plays an important role in this process by allowing me to erase what is personal. For this special edition of ARTiculAction we have selected Untitled Horizon ,an interesting project that our readers have already started to get to know in the introductory pages of this article. What has

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at once caught our attention of this work is the way it brings to a new level of significance the sterilization of the images ,urging us to rethink and sometimes even subvert the way we relate ourselves to such ubiquitous concepts: while walking our readers through the genesis of this project, would you shed light on the way your main source of inspirations?

Untitled Horizon is a video installation that incorporates various raw photography images I gathered while wandering the streets of Tel Aviv and New York, as well as additional footage I shot in the studio. I was interested in what happens when various raw footage from different sources and times are removed from context, sterilized and neutralized, and become a new body and assume a novel form. At the time, I was deeply impressed by Gaston Bachelard's The Poetics of Space, and also read Slavoj Žižek’s Welcome to the Desert of the Real, which led me to consider the collapse of the WTC on September 11 as a television event, a mesmerizing spectacle. It granted me an additional perspective on this event –the fantasy of Hollywood disaster films realized. Philosophical and psychoanalytical sources, as well as the desire to realize a sense of simultaneity brought me seek to create a virtual space that deals with introspection and reflection in the contexts of spectacle and fantasy. Dealing with Untitled Horizon you have remarked once that image is rendered superior to reality : what is the role of the relationship between reality and perception of it in the way you relate yourself to the aesthetic problem ?

When I say that image is rendered superior to reality I mean that images construct a certain reality, and often, the contours are blurred. Imaging is a process in which representations

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replace the object that is being represented. Social representations take precedence over the reality they represent. An example is Michel Houellebecq’s The Map and the Territory, in which the protagonist, artist Jed Martin, is interested in Michelin maps. He buys and photographs the maps; and critics note that the map is more interesting than the territory it depicts. These assumptions influence and lead me in addressing the issue of aesthetics in my work. Aesthetic decisions enable creating comparisons or references inside the work to a familiar image. They have the power to create a fictional reality, or to be precise – hyperreality. In addition, the intersection between matter and digitalization plays a major part in the process. Untitled Horizon also questions the relationship between the concepts of space and familiarity has reminded us of the notion of non lieu elaborated by French anthropologit Marc Augé. As the Simon Starling did in his early installations ,Untitled Horizon shows a successful attempt to deconstruct perceptual processes from the collective imagery to walk the viewers through a process of selfreflection. This brings to a new level of significance the notion of physicality in everyday life experience. So we would take this occasion to ask you if in your opinion personal experience is an absolutely indespensable part of a creative process... Do you think that a creative process could be disconnected from direct experience?

It’s very reasonable to assume that personal experience is an absolutely indispensable part of a creative process because art is a way of observing, a prism to a particular perspective of the world. Personal experience is often necessary, and in my case my work is often derived from the

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encounter with a structure that interests me both from an architectural and social perspective, dreams and images I meet. In my creative processes, personal experience is predominate in the viewer’s encounter with my work. For me, this new place is supposed to create a multi-sensory experience that will accompany the viewer and invoke ideas and questions I seek to raise as part of my work. Another interesting work of yours that has particularly impacted on us and on which we would like to spend some words is entitled State of matter :drawing from highly symbolic and evokative elements from urban contemporary imagery. While exhibiting a captivating vibrancy , State of matter rejects an explicit explanatory strategy :you rather hint the direction to the viewers, offering them to elaborate personal interpretations to the ideas that you convey in it... this quality marks out a considerable part of your production, that is in a certain sense representative of the conflictual relationship between human identity and our unstable contemporary 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?

For me, State of matter is a place that is not a place because it is both very intimate as well as mysterious and distant. The intimate elements (nude swimming, watching the sunrise on an island in Africa, a potted plant swaying in the dusk) that are combined into a generic, urban space, erase the personal and suggest a new reading of utopia. State of matter is a personal work but it does not force itself upon the viewer, but rather offers access to a personal associative world, while the basis of the image is the public sphere. I addressed the sense of simultaneity (the ability to be omnipresent) in State of matter, a sense of insecurity in the wealth of

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opportunities and excess in the contemporary space. I expected the viewer to succumb to the visual-sensory experience, and simultaneously sense ambivalence and ponder the internal, emotional sphere and the external social and cultural sphere. Art has long since left the white cube, and now plays a vital role in the public sphere. I think art does not have a defined role that it must perform in the public sphere, and it is interesting to observe the combination that occurs between these spaces and art. My works begin in the public sphere, and often end there (as a space for display). Yet, most of the raw material I accrue from neutralized public spaces blend and become raw material for creating non-places. Enabling the viewer to temporarily ignore the excess of information ,Daydream produces a dialectical fusion capable of creating a non linear narrative that walks the fine line between literal and conceptual meanings. 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 agree with Demand; art encourages versatile and mobility and does not commit to embodying any specific or symbolic meaning. I think this is a positive change. As I said, I think that the infinite abundance of image lead to sterilization and voiding of meaning. This is why action and the medium itself play an important role in my work. In Daydream I examined psychological aspects of the medium and considered the

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boundaries inherent to photography and the ways it is displayed. It offers a novel way for displaying the digital image. While thinking about my work and observing the images, I am influenced by cinematic narratives, literary and philosophical texts. Constructing and deconstructing images while combining symbols, time and meanings allow me to refrain from committing to a symbolic meaning in the products. But when images encounter a tangible construction, a new form and body is created. For me, this new form is not bound to a symbolic world or to any single narrative; rather, it results in an experience that exists inside the work. As you have remarked once ,the space constructed creates a sterile area, in which dialogue and internal encounters among the works take place .In this sense, your works could be considered multisensorial biographies that univeil t of Art in the contemporarythe aestethic consequences of a combination between tactile, concrete reality and the abstract concept of symbol, 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 aspec age?

The question of art and function is a very large one. In my installations I address this question through their temporality. My installations cannot materialize without electricity, and the structure the visual images are screened upon is temporary and made of set materials. Art has the power to raise questions for the artists and the viewers, and I’d like to believe it also has the power to change and trigger action. In the meantime, daily practice and curiosity are what drive me. I think passion and desire to

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persevere are inseparable to the artistic process. Over these years your works have been exhibited in several occasions, and you are going to have a solo at the Ramat-Gan museum, Israel. 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?

When I consider a certain work, I take the meeting with the viewers into account. This is especially true for video installations, where the viewers play an important role in the work, and so language and aesthetics are of course considered. As we speak, the installation I set up at the Museum of Israeli Art Ramat Gan is taking place. I constructed a corridor in the foyer of the museum gallery space leading to the opposite wall. Inside this corridor, a virtual corridor is screened; at its end, a panorama view of landscapes changes so rapidly that it is impossible to grasp. The segments of landscapes screened are comprised of raw materials photographed in Germany from the train between Hamburg and Leipzig. When I observed the raw material I photographed on the train in Germany, it reminded me of views that I did not experience in reality, but were impressed upon me after reading, hearing stories and watching films. The exhibition opened the day after the Holocaust memorial day in

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Israel, and in a museum of Israeli art. The space where my work is displayed, and the audience that views it contribute to the context of my work. In a different place and time, these very same visual materials would have created a completely different effect. During a talk with students at the exhibit, there were many interesting questions, along with frustration from the lack of satisfaction that such an installation creates. One of the students said, “When you say that the viewer becomes a part of the work, or that you learn from the way viewers navigate your work, isn’t that a one sided agreement? The viewers who come see your work are unaware that they are part of your research.” Thanks a lot for your time and for sharing your thoughts, Shahar. Finally, would you like to tell us readers something about your future projects? How do you see your work evolving?

I’m currently working on several projects, two new installations will be displayed at group exhibitions at the end of the summer. One exhibit addresses the relationship between two and three-dimensions, and deconstruction of photography. I am also engaged in developing a body of work based on installations incorporating sculpture, photography and video. My main desire is to begin graduate studies in fine arts, or to begin a residency abroad so that I may challenge myself and observe how other places around the world affect my interests and work. Thank you, it’s been a pleasure telling you about myself and my work. An interview by Dario Rutigliano, curator and Melissa C. Hilborn, curator articulaction@post.com

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A yshe Kizilçay Lives and works in Geneva, Switzerland

An artist's statement

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yshe Kizilçay or KiAy, born 1980 in Neuchâtel, lives and works in Geneva, Switzerland. graduated from HEAD & CUI, Geneva. has a practice of artistic mediation and worked as a curator in different contexts. likes the number 7. has been featured in cyber and off-space exhibitions in Europe, as well as in several swiss art spaces. has been one of the pillars of the Mac Gyver Manifesto DIY feminist pirate collective. talks to machines through computer programming. loves the number 4, 13 & 22 (but loves the number 4 a little more). focuses on the process of individuation, mental borders and the multiplicity of reality. suffers from severe dyscalculia and developed a fond interest in recreational mathematics and numerology to compensate.

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does not sell and is not part of the art market. not now, not tomorrow, probably not ever.

1. guilt of wrong-doing. 2. stop the experiment. congeal it. capture the wild and hope to tame it. 3. be oneself. through others. be other. through others. 4. fail every second, from birth until death. 5. clarification of one’s words. definition of one’s own position. 6. make. undo. start again. redo. start again. 7. stop trying to exist as an individual. eventually, exist as an individual. 8. the victory against the monster(s). 9. the CsO (but the organs carefully piled a few meters further). 10. x...x is a horizontal palindrom. 11.x = a multidimensional palindrom. mouse coordinates infinite. 12. the m-u-l-t-i-p-l-i-c-i-t-y of reality. 13. and have sweet dreams, kid.


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

Highly stimulating in its communicative concreteness, ampersand break point/ fermata is a compelling work by Genéve based artist Ayshe Kizilçay. While walking the viewers through an unconventional exploration of the nature of reality differs from what we perceive, she accomplishes the difficult task of showing the creation of a relationship between a voice and a text while activating basic principles of psychoanalysis. What mostly impressed of Kizilçay's approach is the way her investigation about the phenomena of human perception provokes reflection about contemporary age unveiling unsuspected but ubiquitous connections between art producing and the audience. We are particularly pleased to introduce our readers to her multifaceted artistic production. Hello Ayshe and welcome to ARTiculAction: to start this interview, we would like to pose you a question about your background. You have a solid background and you graduated in 2013 from the HEAD Geneva: how does this experience influence the way you currently

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

To be formed in a school of art allowed me to develop a great deal of knowledge in the theoretical and critical aspect of aesthetics but also when it comes to the bigger picture of art. Before, I knew nothing about the problematics linked to the art market, collections or economy. During my second year, I took a conceptual art class and was introduced to the work of Michael Asher. His works for the Consortium of Dijon and his intervention in the gallery Toselli had a deep impact on my view on art. He didn’t create objects but moved them or modified what surrounded him, in an extremely critical but also poetic way. He managed to create profound spaces of reflexion. It is the work of Asher that deeply influenced my choice not to sell art and not to make collectable artworks. A choice which I maintain today. I thus have to find a way to pay my invoices, and nevertheless to find time for my artistic practice. All this is in connection with my research on the individuals, their relationships to the


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world, the values they’re capable of protecting (or not) in a more and more capitalistic, speed performance demanding world. It’s important for me to protect a space which maintains distance with what can be considered as established. You are a versatile artist and your approach encapsulates several techniques and media, revealing a stimulating search of an organic symbiosis between a variety of viewpoints. The results convey together a coherent sense of unity, that rejects any conventional classification. While walking our readers through your process, we would like to ask you if you have you ever happened to realize that such approach is the only way to express and convey the ideas you explore.

To be honest, there have been times I felt completely lost... working with diverse techniques only lead to more problems to solve when trying to address art. But the reasonI work this way is because I realized every intention has its own « frame » or media. Say, your work is all about time. Are you going to write about it or are you gonna find a medium that itself, already questions what time is? When asked to describe what I do, for administration purposes for example, I use the term « electronic media artists » because that’s what I am. Then, electronic media can be anything. Digital photography, music, video art.... to define is to limit. You have to find a proper language

depending on who you speak to and what you speak about, give language a shape. It is the same for my works. I give them the shape, the medium that I judge the most suitable for them. For this special issue of ARTiculAction we have selected ampersand break point/ fermata, a stimulating project about the creation of a relationship between a voice and a text while activating basic principles of psychoanalysis, 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 your inquiry into how our cognition influences the reality we perceive creates an harmonic mix between a vivid, performative approach to the evokative reminders conveyed by the materials you combine together: when walking our readers through the genesis of ampersand break point/ fermata, would you shed a light about the role of metaphors in your process?

I think metaphors are a tremendous part of my work as they are a tremendous part of me as a person. Metaphors help me convey ideas that I couldn’t share otherwise. Be it, because of my lack of vocabulary, or because something is so intimate that it is difficult to express. Through metaphors, you find ways to communicate on a different level. What’s interesting about using metaphors (and allegories) in art is that you open a door to interpretation.

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You no longer make a statement but suggest. You can never be right or wrong, that is especially true in contemporary art. I guess that is the reason I am so interested in psychoanalysis, and its the relationship between words and images. Turning an intention into an image lets the person who appropriates this image put it in its own words and eventually, understand that intention with a lexicon of their own. The compelling ambience that pervades ampersand break point/ fermata invites the viewers to a multilayered experience and the way you explore the ambivalent relation between the intrinsically ephemeral nature of paper and the sense of permanence accomplishes the difficult task of constructing a concrete aesthetic from experience, working on both subconscious and conscious level. So we would take this occasion to ask you if in your opinion personal experience is absolutely indispensable as part of the creative process? Do you think that a creative process could be disconnected from direct experience?

All the works I have ever done came from personal experiences but in the process of creating the work, I’ve always grown a distance between my first intention and the actual result. Some artists work with intimate material, such as diaries or everyday life photographs. I’ve never been able to relate to that type of art that I find

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too narcissistic. I feel that there’s simply no room for me as a viewer. I see art as a window to something. When I look through that window, I want to see something I hadn’t seen before, or see it a little differently. The artists are in charge of designing the window. Will they open it? Scratch the glass? Close the shutters? Or simply draw a square on a piece of paper and tell you, hey, that’s a window. Because that’s what it’s all about. What you experience can lead to a work of art, but what makes art is the way you transmit whatever your experience was. Make that experience available to others. Your approach accomplishes an effective investigation about the process of individuation, mental borders and the multiplicity of reality. German multidisciplinary artist Thomas Demand once stated that "nowadays art can no longer rely so much on symbolic strategies and has to probe psychological, narrative elements within the medium instead". What is your opinion about it? And in particular how do you conceive the narrative and especially the visual unity for your works?

I think that it is necessary to keep balance between both. A too narrative work risks to limit the subject whereas symbolism, can by its less authoritarian shape widen possibilities of readings. In both visual art and literature, I like the symbolic contents. It allows me to build an individual interpretation, based on my culture. In

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my practice, it's true that I pay a lot of attention to the mechanisms I summon and a big part of my work consists in making sure they will be operated during their reception. It is particularly true for interactive works. But it does not make everything. I think that the symbolic art, can touch. What moves us moreover in the depths of ourselves often remains unconscious to us. You regularly take part in performances and art projects in public space: your work 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 am a great admirer of Ernest PignonErnest’s works. He’s a formidable artist who creates academic drawings and install them in the public space. What intrigues me in his works is the contradiction between the time spent designing them and their lifetime. Also, you would not expect to find that kind of art at the corner of the street. It’s something you would rather believe to see in a gallery or a museum. And precisely, if shown in a gallery or a museum, his works would lose all interest. My point is, a work of art isn’t only a plastic response to an intention. The context in which any artwork is shown is part of a whole. I’d

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rather not show a work then show it in a context that wouldn’t make sense. When I was in art school, my teachers would go insane because of this. We had exhibition rooms but I would systematically find a place that really suited the work I’d present. I did it in a bike room once, because the architecture was more compelling. I don’t care much for the white box/black box spaces.... no interest. If I am given a space, I’ll create works that dialogue with the space I am given, but I won’t compromise and show any work anywhere. Recently, I had to create an installation for an exhibition that happened in a room. The curator made it clear that the room wasn’t just another exhibition spot. She wanted the artists to really investigate the collective unconscious meaning of the room. I was collaborating with my musician friend D.C.P and we only knew our work was going to be an audio visual, mapping type installation. There was little time to prepare since the exhibition lasted one week and everyday, a new artist would appropriate the room. When it was our turn, we wanted to use the room per say and invite people in. But we both knew there wasn’t anything special about that room and we weren’t getting a big budget to modify it the way we would have wanted to either. So last minute, we decided to close the door. We installed 5 or 6 speakers inside the room, spatialized the sound and I spent quite some time trying to get the best angle for my projector to show some visual lines

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crawling on the doorstep. People were kept out, on a closed door, imagining what was happening inside instead of experiencing it. Your works often induce the viewers to abandon therselves to free associations: when artists leaves thier works open to interpretation, it is like giving the viewer permission to see anything in your works without anyone ever being wrong. Has that ever proven to be a problem?

When someone appropriates a work I’ve done, it means they’ve gone all the way from where they’re were to where I speak from. I can only take that as reward. I don’t care about the type of connection that’s been made, I only care that there has been a connection and work towards that. But in any work I have ever done, I’ve always tried to never lose sight of a form of critical position, even in the most simple way. Recently I showed a web artwork to an acquaintance of mine. It’s a color shifting image actually a test pattern, used for calibrating colors and a fortiori, defining standards she said « oh, it’s pretty, colors are changing, it’s very girly ». I was devastated, haha! Over these years you works have been exhibited in several occasions in Europe, as well as in many cyber and off-spaces. One of the hallmarks of your works is the capability to establish direct relation with the audience, deleting any conventional

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barrier between the idea you explore and who receipt and cosequently elaborate them. So before taking leave from this interesting conversation I would like to pose a a question about the nature of the relation with your audience: in particular, do you consider the issue of audience reception as being a crucial component of your decisionmaking process in terms of what type of language for a particular context?

Immensely. As you must have understand by now, the human factor and the mechanisms of human psyche is probably one of the major problematics in my work. When addressing a work of art, you have to be very careful with the language you use and how you’re going to use it. The biggest danger with wanting to communicate a specific idea is probably to create something too didactic or in the worst case scenario, become a tyrant. That happens when you want to control something too much. I don’t know if you’re familiar with french philosopher Jacques Rancière, but as an artist, this overthetop control will eventually turn you into what Rancière calls the « pédagogue abrutissant » (the stultifying pedagogue). « This is the logic of the stultifying pedagogue, the logic of straight, uniform transmission: there is something — a form of knowledge, a capacity, an energy in a body or a mind — on one side, and it must pass to the other side. What the pupil must learn is what the

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schoolmaster must teach her. What the spectator must see is what the director makes her see *». I refuse to dictate the way people are going to receive my works but create works that will activate certain mechanisms instead. *Jacques Rancière, « The Emancipated Spectator ». Thanks a lot for your time and for sharing your thoughts, Ayshe: would you like to tell us readers something about your future projects? How do you see your work evolving?

Machines have become a more important part of my work. I’ve always loved computers and worked with them but a couple of years ago, I’ve realized that I wanted to be able to communicate with machines and not just use them. I’ve studied programming for a year at the computer center of Geneva University and this has opened a new horizon for me. Computers and humans are so much alike, it’s fascinating. I’ll be working with programming a lot more from now on. My favorite baby right now is SuperCollider, an open source programming software that lets you write every single detail and proprietie of sound. Also a big project for me now is to find a new home, since I’ve been sort of homeless for a year! An interview by Josh Ryder, curator and Barbara Scott, curator articulaction@post.com


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M ichal Huss Lives and works in Tel Aviv, Israel

An artist's statement

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create art about the current political climate of the Middle East, my home. I adopt art as an alternative mode for communication, commemoration and documentation to explore how art can create political engagement, and sympathy for the complexity of political realities from many perspectives, within its viewers. Broadly, my artwork is about global power structures and geopolitical conflicts. My art intends to challenge a single historical or documentary genre: I mix textual and visual

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signifiers, memories, facts and fiction. I am interested in representing the ways in which nations and people carry the weight of their historical traumas. I aim to explore the notion of testifying to political trauma by including unexpected witnesses or evidence, such as: collage; mythology or metaphor; language games; objects; hand drawn maps or landscape as memories of people’s history.

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Michal Huss An interview by Josh Ryder, curator

Hello Michal and welcome to ARTiculAction: to start this interview, we would pose you a couple of questions about your background. Which among your experiences have particularly influenced your evolution as an artist? In particular, how does your cultural substratum inform the way you relate yourself to art making and to the aesthetic problem in general?

(Israel) that is involved in an ongoing conflict. This has made me interested in subject matters - such as history, trauma and memory - that are part of everyday life in Israel. In particular, I was interested in the linkage between these topics to the aesthetic medium. Out of this broad context I have focused on the visual elements of maps and photography archives. I examine maps as a form of language made out of specific set of political-power- knowledge claims; its discourse is constructed from lines, divisions and borders. Maps represent geographic knowledge, and alleged truth, and I am interested in linking these ideas with political power struggles. Similarly, to maps, archives that are constructed from Images or text do not merely describe an existing or past order of things, but actually create realities. My art intervenes within these power systems. For example, in a project from 2014 titled the Image of the Past - I used the technique of collage to create a non-liner historical documentation. The material used is archival images of the first Zionist immigrants before the establishment of the State of Israel alongside a contemporary images of the occupied territories archived from the media. The work explores the mechanics of power behind the image. It also critics the colonialist interrelation between building and destruction.

An experience that influenced me particularly was growing up in a country

Multidisciplinarity is a key feature of your approach, that coherently

and Barbara Scott, curator articulaction@post.com

Drawing inspiration from current political climate of the Middle East artist Michal Huss' work explores the relationship between communication and commemoration, to walk us through the liminal area in which memory and perceptual processes find a point of convergence. The installation You, Me and the Next War that we'll be discussing in the following pages, creates a multilayered involvement with the viewers, who are urged to investigates about the effective non linear narrative that is extracted from a recontextualization of canonical imagery. One of the most convincing aspect of Huss' practice is the way it accomplishes the difficult task of representing the ways in which nations and people carry the weight of their historical traumas: we are very pleased to introduce our readers to her multifaceted artistic production.

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encapsulates elements from documentary genre as well as from fiction, revealing an unconventional still consistent sense of unity. Before starting to elaborate about your 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 techniques is the only way to express and convey the idea you explore.

Yes, I find the mixing of techniques a crucial method to explore the complexity of my subject matters. The intertwined techniques enable me to challenge the division between art and science, personal and ideological, poetic and political. In The Law of Genre, Derrida discussed the limitation of the genre, ‘as soon as genre announces itself, one must respect a norm, one must not cross a line of demarcation, one must not risk impurity, anomaly, or monstrosity.’ (Derrida, 1980 p. 57). This has influenced me a lot in terms of defining methods to represent my artistic subject matters. I use the artistic licence of the artist in order to destabilise genres through mixing truth, fantasy and subjectivity. For me, important micro narratives emerge within contradictions, fragmentations or inconsistencies. For this special edition of ARTiculAction we have selected You, Me and the Next War, a stimulating project that our readers have already started to get to know in the introductory pages of this article. This project explains how our dreams can be more clear when they are obstructed: your exploration of the oniric sphere unveils a channel of communication between the unconscious level and the conscious one. So we would take this occasion to ask you if in your opinion personal experience is an absolutely indispensable part of a creative process both to create and to snatch the spirit of a piece of art... Do you think that

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Michal Huss


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a creative process could be disconnected from direct experience?

I do not think that there has to be a direct relationship between an experience and the creative process. However, I believe that in many cases the relationship exists either directly or indirectly. On some level, the artist always writes himself or when making an art work, he expresses himself or herself: Personally, I often use my work in order to make sense of my experiences, and vice versa. Your work is pervaded with a subtle but effective narrative, and the insightful combination between the space of the installation and the written words you created for You, Me and the Next War captures non-sharpness with an universal kind of language, capable of bringing 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.

I try to use memory as a faithful translation of experiences. It is through memory that we transcribe an experience into something else, transferring it to a concept, a representation, into words. This is not to say that translation is not a form of editing and reshaping the essence of the experience, rather that this process is inherent to any form of representation. In other words, the way our psyche perceives and remembers events is already a reproduction, always influenced by the traces of the self.

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Michal Huss


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As you have remarked once, you aim to explore the notion of testifying to political trauma: 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. Your approach seems to invite the viewers to a process of self-reflection that may lead to subvert a variety of usual, almost stereotyped cultural categories. Do you consider that your works could be considered political in a certain sense or did you seek to maintain a more neutral approach? And in particular, what could be in your opinion the role that an artist could play in the contemporary society?

I do not believe in a dichotomy between neutral areas and politics. I am very interested in the link between art and politics, therefore I use art as a way of reacting to cultural and political events that are happening around me. Throughout history, art has been a tool of memorialization of war and a tool of political protest. Similarly, I have attempted to use art as a way to make human suffering, due to human rights abuses and wars, visible. For me, an important rule for art in contemporary society is within the paradigm of communication - it can give a voice to untold stories from underrepresented and marginalized positons. Art also has an important therapeutic dimension that is not explored enough within the contemporary art world. In particular we would ask you to expand on your understanding of political art. Even if it is not explicitly so, must not all good art be in some sense political?

My personal answers is yes - all art is political, as is all experience. Raising questions about the nature of our society and developing a critical approach toward the art world, politics, and global power

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structures, are all part of being an artist. My understanding of art is a creative form of raising philosophical political questions. You, Me and the Next War highlights the impossibility of objectivity within documentation processes. Your exploration of the way language itself is subject to culture and power dynamics questions the notions of perception and communication, which is comprised of a sender and a receiver and that in your case climbs any identity-based hierarchy to achieve the difficult task of creating a common, almost universal channel of communication between autonomous identities. German multidisciplinary artists Thomas Demand once pointed out that "nowadays art can no longer rely much on symbolic strategies and shows the necessity to probe psychological narrative elements within the medium instead". What's your point about this? In particular, what could be the criteria and the communication strategy that may help to establish whether a work has had any social or political impact?

Demand is raising a very interesting point. Many of the artists I most appreciate managed to make me feel something, beyond the engagement with the art on a conceptual level. An artwork that viewers identify with or develop a personal connection to is extremely powerful. Therefor this might be a useful parameter to measure the political or social impact of the work. Your successful attempt to inquire into the complexity of political realities from many perspectives encourages the viewers to establish a personal relationship with global power structures and geopolitical conflicts and brings such ubiquitous notions to a new level of significance: what kind of reactions did you expect to provoke in the participants?

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I mainly hoped that viewers would observe the work, which may at first seem straightforward, but that gradually develops. The media and press frame representations of people experiencing wars and political conflicts as different, nameless, others. This effects our ability to sympathize with them and often effects the disposition of the viewers in relation to these people and events. This, alongside the mass capacity and circulation of information creates a new type of gaze or rather a glance that does not allow us to develop a deeper thought process in regards to the story and its complexity. A more dangerous element in the quick glance is that is does not allow us to ask questions about the medium- who chose to tell this story, why and how. My hope was that the visual element of the work would invite viewers to spend more time with the texts and ask more questions, that they will engage with questions of motivation to tell the story, and how it is told. One of the hallmarks of your work is the capability to create a direct involvement with the viewers, who are urged to evolve from a condition of mere spectatorship: so before leaving this conversation we would like to pose a question about the nature of the relationship of your art with your audience. Do you consider the issue of audience reception as being a crucial component of your decision-making process, in terms of what type of language is used in a particular context?

Yes, I do consider the issue of audience reception as vital: In this I am influenced by Walter Benjamin who speaks of the virtue of the genre of storytelling as putting an emphasis on experiences rather than facts and information. Additionally, the storyteller makes it known that this is their

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version of the story allowing tracks of their subjectivity to be evident in the narrative. Therefore, the narrative achieves an amplitude that information lacks, allowing room for the listeners to interpret the story. I aim to achieve this storytelling genre by using language games, as a way of opening up the story for the viewer’s interpretation. I am very interested in the verity of types of relations or conversations viewers form different contexts might have with my work. Thanks a lot for your time and for sharing your thoughts, Michal. Finally, would you like to tell us readers something about your future projects? How do you see your work evolving?

Thank you. I am currently working of two projects. The first one is titled, A Guide to Memorials for Soldiers in Israel 20142016. This is a pocket size book consisting of images of 100 memorials for Israeli soldiers in Israel, alongside a descriptive text. It explores the relationship between place and memory and invites viewers to examine the way in which the memorials have become part of the physical and social landscape in Israel. The systematic documentation of dozens of monuments gives close attention to details in order to understand how people use built forms to deal with bereavement. The choices made in regards to each monument such as shape, color, location and size, and the quality of the photograph are studied and compared. The systematic principle of archiving and ordering of images suggests micro narratives and meanings that otherwise might have been unnoticed; it reveals the tensions

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between personal and official commemoration, and personal and collective mourning. Ultimately, this book can be seen as a memorial in itself; it is a type of resistance to the repetition of death and violence motivated by all types of nationalism. The second project I am working on at present is titled the Interpretation of Dreams. This sound installation is based on a process of creating an archive of dreams that women dreamed that were related to rape or sexual harassment. This project aims to testify to the fear and trauma that women experience in a world where women are not safe or protected. The artwork searches for a fresh- nonconventional way to speak of rape and rape culture. At the same time, it maintains awareness to the failure of the possibility of representation of rape, within the contact of trauma that resists or shatters language and communication. The artwork is inspired by a Lacanian definition of fantasy as a defensive device that resists language or image; Fantasy is used in these art works to witness what cannot be seen.

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


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A h-young Jeon Lives and works in Los Angeles, California, USA

An artist's statement

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s a person who is living in a generation bombarded by information and new forms of social interaction, my work is about how I feel and how I think in this time period and culture. I am interested in the progress of emotions like stress, anger or happiness etc, and how we act or react to these emotions. How our emotions changes and what motivates that change, and how people deal with the current social environment and what people believe in or do not believe, interests me a great deal. With all new information which thrown out every second I find myself struggling to keep up with the truth. I believe that a heavy information reliant society directly and indirectly effects people's perspectives,

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conceptions and values. I am interested in how people react, change or adapt in this society. This is the main focus of my work, examining what is happening now. I love to play with colors and space, installation work and clay sculpture are proven mediums supportive of this love. Elements common in my work range from letters, words creating messages, opening a direct dialog with the viewer, often this participation by the viewer acts as a sort of metaphor supporting my concept. The presentation of the message comes in the form of a sweet body, a message that often can leave you with a sour and bitter after taste.

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Exploring the consequences of the excess of information and new forms of social interaction on contemporary society, Ah-young Jeon's work accomplishes an insightful investigation about how our emotions changes and what motivates that change. In her recent works that we'll be discussing in the following pages, her unconventional still effective approach draws the viewers into an area in which the perceptual dimension and imagination merges together into coherent unity. One of the most convincing aspects of Jeon's work is the way it creates an area of vivid interplay between memory and perception, inviting the viewers to explore the unstable relationship between human intervention and freedom in the contemporary age. We are very pleased to introduce our readers to her refined artistic production. Hello Ah-young, 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 MFA of Sculpture, that you received from the prestigious Academy of Art

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University, San Francisco, CA. How did this experience influence your evolution as an artist? And in particular, how does your cultural substratum inform the way relate yourself with the aesthetic problem in general?

All my works during the BFA,MFA program, was focused on ceramic sculpture. I did a lot of portrait based conceptual work and my medium was only clay and glazes. Right before I graduated I struggled with choosing what I really wanted to do and what direction I should head in. I believe these are probably such common thoughts and challenges for those who near graduation. I absolutely had a fear of the real world and wasn't clear about my vision. I have skills that enable me to make whatever I want, but I had a hard time finding myself as an artist. I was one of those students that just followed the directions and would researching how other artists would do things “out there�. My last semester came and I made the sudden decided not to do ceramics which had been my only focus while in school. I was in a comfort zone and realized that I had nothing left to accomplish with ceramics. I changed my medium to


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mixed media. I used acrylic, mold, plaster,spray paint, ready made objects etc...anything that worked for my vision. And I was so inspired and felt right about the new direction and I still feel this way today. A MFA program is not a lot of time to figure things out as far being an artist goes. I think it is part of the process like everything else. You are a versatile artist and your approach encapsulates several techniques, revealing an incessant search of an organic symbiosis between a variety of viewpoints. The results convey together a coherent sense of unity, that rejects any conventional classification. Before starting to elaborate about your production, we would suggest to our readers to visit http://www.ahyoungjeon.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 feel that of course multidisciplinary approach is not the only way to express my ideas. My focus is my vision not the specific materials. I will express this with anything if I feel like it fits good within that vision. I never want to feel a limitation with my art. Also I always like the experience of working with different materials, so to have more choices available when I

work. I am not going to eat only rice because I am asian. For this special issue of ARTiculAction we have selected KABOOM and UNBELIVEABLE, a couple of stimulating works from your recent production that our readers have already stared to get to know in the introductory pages of this article. What has at once caught our attention of this work is the way it accomplishes the difficult task of creating an harmonic mix between a figurative, realistic approach to the evocative reminders conveyed by the materials you combine together: when walking our readers through the genesis of these interesting projects, would you shed a light about the role of metaphors in your process?

This artificial flower series inspirations were simply us and today. We are living in a unique time period between analog and crazy new technologies. I have thought about why we have the artificial flowers these days? Flowers that look sometimes more real than the actual thing. And even though obvious and reasonable ideas were there behind the creation of this fake flowers, amazingly we have the technology capable of making it happen. So artificial flowers represent our time beautifully. It could be negative or positive in terms of how a viewers experience and perspective is. The words or sentences on the plexiglass case happen to be the artificial flower's point of view in

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relation to the world or us. A playful anthropomorphism. Your practice is centered on the exploration of the progress of emotions like stress, anger or happiness and we have highly appreciated the way your approach goes beyond a merely interpretative aspect of the contexts you refer to: although you draw inspiration from outside reality, your works could be considered as tactile biographies of the conflictual symbiosis between perception and imagination. As the late Franz West did in his installations, your work shows unconventional aesthetics in the way it deconstructs perceptual images in order to assemble them in a collective imagery, urging the viewers to a process of selfreflection. Artists are always interested in probing to see what is beneath the surface: maybe one of the roles of an artist could be to reveal unexpected sides of Nature, especially of our inner Nature... what's your view about this?

Probing or acceptance. I stumble along between these two. I think trying to be sensitive and aware of what's happening is really important. And then one can try to prob to see what is beneath the surface. I really enjoying throwing questions out there through my works, that's maybe part of my way of probing. I love to hear what other peoples perspectives are. I try not to close my art off and give it any singularities. Because I don't know the answers, no answer is

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yellow glasses

usually my result of probing. I made the “IAMAPSYCHO� painting series to reflect that there is not a single person that is the same in this world.There is no true standard for being normal. So I accept that possibility of me being a psycho to someone. We are all living in the same century together and we see, hear, develop and create things together. I am trying to enjoy and be aware of as much of our time as possible before it passes away. Your works convey both metaphoric and descriptive research and the compelling narrative that pervades Nuclear Power and Phone Call


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invites the viewers to a multilayered experience. A distinctive mark of the way you convey emotions into your works is the construction of a concrete aesthetic from experience and memories and symbols, working on both subconscious and conscious level. So we would take this occasion to ask you if in your opinion, personal experience is absolutely indispensable as part of the creative process? Do you think that a creative process could be disconnected from direct experience?

I think personal experience is absolutely indispensable to the create process. Personal experience in life is ultimately what we learn from and helps shapes us into who we are or will become, but within the creative process it shows itself in more indirect

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Univocal reference, 38x42, 2010

ways. Just as our decisions throughout days, weeks, years determine our station in life. Personal experience determines ones interests and desires, to remove this from the creative process is to remove creative from process. Many artists from the contemporary scene, as Judy Chicago or more recently Jennifer Linton, use to include socio-political criticism in their works. It is not unusual that an artist, rather than urging the viewer to take a personal position on a subject, tries to convey his personal


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take about the major issues that affect contemporary age. Do you consider that your works are political in this way or do you seek to maintain a neutral approach? Do you feel that it’s your responsibility as an artist to teach and raise awareness of certain issues?

I am not a political artist. Also I am not trying to teach or raise awareness on any issues. I used 1960's magazine images to serve only as a metaphor of the past. They are simply old images to me and represent nothing else. The reasons why I chose some politicians and social issues of that time were based on a concept of my new body of work called “NEVER AGAIN� in which I started becoming aware of how time moves and nothing ever is the same. Political images show a time line simply and clearly because of the historical issues. So they seemed to me to be the perfect images to express the idea that nothing ever stays the same. The fruible set of elements you draw from universal imagery trigger the viewers' primordial parameters concerning our relation with physicality: as Gerhard Richter once remarked, "my concern is never art, but always what art can be used for": what is your opinion about the functional aspect of Art in the contemporary age?

It is of my opinion that the function of art in its own time, that is to say the contemporary age is to be dis-

functional. Art when it is art does not neatly fit anywhere, no one has asked for it and so no label is applied to it, yet there it is for people to deal with or not. Once the work becomes functional in the traditional sense its not really art any longer, its apart of the system and functions within it, it is culture. It then becomes a version of someones savings account or is traded like a stock if it is that important to the culture, it is an image of its former self reminding us of the art it use to be, and shows us the culture it has become. Of course most art never becomes functional and remains in the dysfunctional limbo possibly waiting to be discovered again or risking being forgotten forever. Another interesting work from your recent production that has particularly impacted on us ad on which we'll be pleased to spend some words is entitled Turn Out: as most of your works this piece is pervaded with an effective narrative and the stories you represent are surrounded by visual beauties. Playing with the evokative power of a wide variety of elements, your paintings could be considered as tactile biographies that establishes direct relations with the viewers: how much important is narrative for your works and how do you develop it?

As I mentions before my work is an open book there is no description of how to read my art. Narrative is not important at all in my works. It can be

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a narrative to viewers but not to me. I am more close to an anti narrative artist I think. I am trying to show what I see. There is no story to it. I do have a story about where I get inspired, but that's all I have. And I am intensionally trying to not make any narrative art. Also even if I am writing direct messages with text on my work, I am trying to not to give any literal sense to it. I choose the text or sentence having a completely arbitrary relation with the imagery or actively contradict the imagery in a way. The unknown aspect of art with no right or wrong answers or direction is also the most exciting part of art I think. Over these years you works have been exhibited in several occasions and 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?

If I am a gallerist or art salesperson, audiences are a crucial component of my art decision- making process. But I am an artist if I considered how the audience would think about and react

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to my work in terms of the decisionmaking process I would be the best product designer at IKEA. I do enjoy learning what audiences think and talk about in regards to my work, but it doesn't effect my future projects or dictate any part of my creative process. Thanks a lot for your time and for sharing your thoughts, Ah-young. Finally, would you like to tell us readers something about your future projects. How do you see your work evolving?

I am working with photography art these days. I am inspired by the photography process as far as illustrating the action of stopping time . It shows the fleeting nature that is time, t and makes me think that maybe we only exist in the past where our memories are only thing that makes us feel that we are here. Time has always been an interesting subject for me. I am excited to imagine how I can grow from here and how far I can push the boundaries of my own concepts. Thank you for your sincere interview questions. I really enjoyed answering every single question. Also thank you to the Artica Team for asking me to participate and for giving me this wonderful opportunity to share my work and vision.


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Y u-Tyan Yen Lives and works in Taiwan

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an two such films generate two different stories ? Such as what spectators see similar scenes twice, but listen to two versions of dialogues, so narrative difference produced; but this does not mean that all filmic situations can adapt to change all kinds of dialogues. Because what happens? This situation acts must be reasonable, visually as much as logic. - With Level Sensors or Griffin PowerMate, the viewer gets to make disappear images of the left or of the right, in case of alternation, even if each time of occurrence of speech are not the same (but the number of different video sequences is limited to 12), they carry on changing everyday life after one year of tipping the political situation(first choice:the government is reunited with the other foreign government there was already one year; second choice: the government is recognized by the UN

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there was already one year) Development of the story narrative is under the principle of the dichotomous method, - Two men just move between the edge and the screen center one year after the two men met again They tell each other of the recent personal circumstances and daily changes influenced by the political changeover(one was the teacher of the other) while they speak warmly, they move freely, either walking or sitting or standing, sometimes moving towards the the front of the camera, sometimes going to the back of leisure facilities(between the edge and the screen center).

Yu-Tyan Yen


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

Exploring the aesthetic and structural potential of semantic manipulation, multidisciplinary artist Yu-Tyan Yen's work poses questions about the notions of hybridizidation and chance. In his insightful work "If this country becomes...�, that we'll be discussing in the following pages, he provides the viewers with a multilayered experience, urging them to investigate about the conflictual relationships between experience and perception that pervades our unstable contemporary age. One of the most convincing aspect of Yen's practice is the way it accomplishes the difficult task of creating a deep synergy between our limbic parameters and our rational categories: we are very pleased to introduce our readers to his stimulating artistic production. Hello Yu-Tyan 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 Ph.D. of Aesthetics, Arts Sciences and Technology that you received from the prestigious UniversitÊ Paris VIII Vincennes - Saint-Denis: how has this experience influenced your evolution as an artist? And in particular, does your cultural substratum inform the way you relate yourself to the aesthetic problem?

I thank ARTiculAction Team has to make the assessments in my work "If this country Becomes ...". And I request you to excuse me for delayed responses to interview

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Exploring the aesthetic and structural potential of semantic manipulation, multidisciplinary artist Yu-Tyan Yen's work poses questions about the notions of hybridizidation and chance. In his insightful work "If this country becomes...�, that we'll be discussing in the following pages, he provides the viewers with a multilayered experience, urging them to investigate about the conflictual relationships between experience and perception that pervades our unstable contemporary age. One of the most convincing aspect of Yen's practice is the way it accomplishes the difficult task of creating a deep synergy between our limbic parameters and our rational categories: we are very pleased to introduce our readers to his stimulating artistic production. Hello Yu-Tyan 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 Ph.D. of Aesthetics, Arts Sciences and Technology that you received from the prestigious UniversitÊ Paris VIII Vincennes - Saint-Denis: how has this experience influenced your evolution as an artist? And in particular, does your cultural substratum inform the way you relate yourself to the aesthetic problem?

I thank ARTiculAction Team has to make the assessments in my work "If this country Becomes ...". And I request you to excuse me for delayed responses to interview questions. Now I am teacher at Tatung University in Taipei, giving courses in Media Design department. Before going to Paris for my doctoral studies, I completed my studies of Fine Arts of NTUA (National Taiwan University of Arts). Becoming an artist is always the dream since my childhood, I know this is beginning to realize, but not only as a painter, perhaps an all-in-touch to the art, which is said of multidisciplinary sense. Training Paris VIII Vincennes - SaintDenis, including my thesis under the direction of Jean-Louis Boissier, they always

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Yu-Tyan Yen

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Special Issue

Exploring the aesthetic and structural potential of semantic manipulation, multidisciplinary artist Yu-Tyan Yen's work poses questions about the notions of hybridizidation and chance. In his insightful work "If this country becomes...�, that we'll be discussing in the following pages, he provides the viewers with a multilayered experience, urging them to investigate about the conflictual relationships between experience and perception that pervades our unstable contemporary age. One of the most convincing aspect of Yen's practice is the way it accomplishes the difficult task of creating a deep synergy between our limbic parameters and our rational categories: we are very pleased to introduce our readers to his stimulating artistic production. Hello Yu-Tyan 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 Ph.D. of Aesthetics, Arts Sciences and Technology that you received from the prestigious UniversitÊ Paris VIII Vincennes - Saint-Denis: how has this experience influenced your evolution as an artist? And in particular, does your cultural substratum inform the way you relate yourself to the aesthetic problem?

I thank ARTiculAction Team has to make the assessments in my work "If this country Becomes ...". And I request you to excuse me for delayed responses to interview questions. Now I am teacher at Tatung University in Taipei, giving courses in Media Design department. Before going to Paris for my doctoral studies, I completed my studies of Fine Arts of NTUA (National Taiwan University of Arts). Becoming an artist is always the dream since my childhood, I know this is beginning to realize, but not only as a painter, perhaps an all-in-touch to the art, which is said of multidisciplinary sense. Training Paris VIII Vincennes - Saint-Denis, including my thesis under the direction of Jean-Louis Boissier, they always guide me the regard of what interactivity, and they apprendent me to see issues of artistic creation, not only in terms of

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Yu-Tyan Yen

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Yu-Tyan Yen

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Special Issue

Exploring the aesthetic and structural potential of semantic manipulation, multidisciplinary artist Yu-Tyan Yen's work poses questions about the notions of hybridizidation and chance. In his insightful work "If this country becomes...�, that we'll be discussing in the following pages, he provides the viewers with a multilayered experience, urging them to investigate about the conflictual relationships between experience and perception that pervades our unstable contemporary age. One of the most convincing aspect of Yen's practice is the way it accomplishes the difficult task of creating a deep synergy between our limbic parameters and our rational categories: we are very pleased to introduce our readers to his stimulating artistic production. Hello Yu-Tyan 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 Ph.D. of Aesthetics, Arts Sciences and Technology that you received from the prestigious UniversitÊ

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Paris VIII Vincennes - Saint-Denis: how has this experience influenced your evolution as an artist? And in particular, does your cultural substratum inform the way you relate yourself to the aesthetic problem?

I thank ARTiculAction Team has to make the assessments in my work "If this country Becomes ...". And I request you to excuse me for delayed responses to interview questions. Now I am teacher at Tatung University in Taipei, giving courses in Media Design department. Before going to Paris for my doctoral studies, I completed my studies of Fine Arts of NTUA (National Taiwan University of Arts). Becoming an artist is always the dream since my childhood, I know this is beginning to realize, but not only as a painter, perhaps an all-in-touch to the art, which is said of multidisciplinary sense. Training Paris VIII Vincennes - SaintDenis, including my thesis under the direction of Jean-Louis Boissier, they always guide me the regard of what interactivity, and they apprendent me to see issues of


Yu-Tyan Yen

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R e v i e w

Special Issue

Exploring the aesthetic and structural potential of semantic manipulation, multidisciplinary artist Yu-Tyan Yen's work poses questions about the notions of hybridizidation and chance. In his insightful work "If this country becomes...�, that we'll be discussing in the following pages, he provides the viewers with a multilayered experience, urging them to investigate about the conflictual relationships between experience and perception that pervades our unstable contemporary age. One of the most convincing aspect of Yen's practice is the way it accomplishes the difficult task of creating a deep synergy between our limbic parameters and our rational categories: we are very pleased to introduce our readers to his stimulating artistic production. Hello Yu-Tyan 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 Ph.D. of Aesthetics, Arts Sciences and Technology that you received from the prestigious UniversitÊ

Paris VIII Vincennes - Saint-Denis: how has this experience influenced your evolution as an artist? And in particular, does your cultural substratum inform the way you relate yourself to the aesthetic problem?

I thank ARTiculAction Team has to make the assessments in my work "If this country Becomes ...". And I request you to excuse me for delayed responses to interview questions. Now I am teacher at Tatung University in Taipei, giving courses in Media Design department. Before going to Paris for my doctoral studies, I completed my studies of Fine Arts of NTUA (National Taiwan University of Arts). Becoming an artist is always the dream since my childhood, I know this is beginning to realize, but not only as a painter, perhaps an all-in-touch to the art, which is said of multidisciplinary sense. Training Paris VIII Vincennes - SaintDenis, including my thesis under the direction of Jean-Louis Boissier, they always guide me the regard of what interactivity, and they apprendent me to see issues of

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ICUL CTION C o n t e m p o r a r y

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Yu-Tyan Yen

R e v i e w

Special Issue

Exploring the aesthetic and structural potential of semantic manipulation, multidisciplinary artist Yu-Tyan Yen's work poses questions about the notions of hybridizidation and chance. In his insightful work "If this country becomes...�, that we'll be discussing in the following pages, he provides the viewers with a multilayered experience, urging them to investigate about the conflictual relationships between experience and perception that pervades our unstable contemporary age. One of the most convincing aspect of Yen's practice is the way it accomplishes the difficult task of creating a deep synergy between our limbic parameters and our rational categories: we are very pleased to introduce our readers to his stimulating artistic production. Hello Yu-Tyan 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 Ph.D. of Aesthetics, Arts Sciences and Technology that you received from the prestigious UniversitÊ Paris VIII Vincennes Saint-Denis: how has this experience influenced your evolution as an artist? And in particular, does your cultural substratum inform the way you relate yourself to the aesthetic problem?

I thank ARTiculAction Team has to make the assessments in my work "If this country Becomes ...". And I request you to excuse me for delayed responses to interview questions. Now I am teacher at Tatung University in Taipei, giving courses in Media Design department. Before going to Paris for my doctoral studies, I completed my studies of Fine Arts of NTUA (National Taiwan University of Arts). Becoming an artist is always the dream since my childhood, I know this is beginning to realize, but not only as a painter, perhaps an all-in-touch to the art, which is said of multidisciplinary sense. Training Paris VIII Vincennes - Saint-Denis, including my thesis under the direction of Jean-Louis Boissier, they always guide me the regard of what interactivity, and they apprendent me to see

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issues of artistic creation, not only in terms of theoretical research and the practice of same as an 'artist. I am Taiwanese, I live and I grew, the problem of national identity makes me really the big question, when I lived in Paris in particular. That's why I undertake teacher role, and this qustion (it becomes increasingly obvious for young taiwananis) actually exists for the actor


Yu-Tyan Yen

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Special Issue

Exploring the aesthetic and structural potential of semantic manipulation, multidisciplinary artist Yu-Tyan Yen's work poses questions about the notions of hybridizidation and chance. In his insightful work "If this country becomes...�, that we'll be discussing in the following pages, he provides the viewers with a multilayered experience, urging them to investigate about the conflictual

relationships between experience and perception that pervades our unstable contemporary age. One of the most convincing aspect of Yen's practice is the way it accomplishes the difficult task of creating a deep synergy between our limbic parameters and our rational categories: we are very pleased to introduce our readers to his stimulating artistic production.

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Aline Bunji p

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Lives and works in Dallas, USA

An artist's statement

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hen I was four years old, I had a near death experience while having an open heart surgery. My heart stopped beating, my body temperature went low, a heart-lung machinemy kept artwork me alive. Coming back from With I want to that threshold, I knew that opposites are bound together and that I encompass bring joy, put a smile on both. It left me fascinated with edges and people's faces and sometimes yearning for meaning. My works are born from that same simultaneous sense of open their mind for more vertigo and stability.

tolerance. They deal with a dichotomous - the realization that one reality can reflect many and there is no one definition. The My should make people, truth art is endlessly evolving and expanding. Iincluding try and reconcile conflicts happy and myself, and contradictions such as beauty that encompasses crudeness, weakness as a satisfied. source of strength and disillusionment that feeds innocence. The early works (“Red Heart”, 2007-09) are naïve drawings of bodies and situations, subtle yet disturbing. Minimalist figures floating in white space. With time, layers appear

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(“Illusions & Reality”, 2010-13). Through intricate drawings and installations I struggle to weave together the past, present and future. Recently I’m fascinated with transformation (“Release”, 2014-15). The Sisyphean process evolved to a new set of rules, which dictates different materials, gestures and speed. The new paintings are large and expressive, made in one continuous session, like an intense ritual. I see my studio as a cross between a womb and a lab. My practice is a tool for understanding myself as well as the world of phenomena around me. My goal is to generate a change that shapes perspectives and actions, thus enabling for something new to occur - symbolically, conceptually and tangibly. I have a distinct feeling that there is something beyond me, a life force, which I can’t put into words but I can channel into art.

Huanglu Shi


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meets

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Aline Bunji An interview by Melissa C. Hilborn, curator and Barbara Scott, curator articulaction@post.com

Basel based artist Aline Bunji's work is an harmonic fusion between visual harmony and effective storytelling and invites the viewers to an immersive experience to explore the liminal area in which images create an atmosphere capable of providing the spectatorship of a multilayered experience. Rejecting any conventional classification, Bunji's crosses the elusive boundary that defines the area of perception from the realm of imagination experience: one of the most impressive aspects of her work is her successful attempt to capture non sharpness with an universal visual language, to speak of joy and emotion. We are very pleased to introduce our readers to her captivating artistic production. Hello Aline and welcome to ARTiculAction: to start this interview we would pose you a couple of introductory questions about your background. You have a solid formal training and you

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attended numerous art courses in Switzerland and Germany to broaden your abilities and better you craft: how have these experiences influenced your evolution as an artist? Moreover, how does your cultural substratum inform the way you relate yourself to art making and to the aesthetic problem in general?

I’m always trying to evolve as an artist, to learn new techniques, new points of view and approaches. I consider this very important to evolve. In my opinion, you can learn something from anybody. So, yes, (art-)teachers have influenced me; some a little, some a lot, they helped me also to find and believe in my own style. Honestly, I'd like to believe that my cultural roots don't affect the way I relate to art making, but I guess they do anyway. Your works reveal an insightful combination between classicism and contemporary sensitiveness you mix together into effective balance: the results convey together a consistent sense of


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unity that rejects any conventional classification. We would suggest to our readers to visit http://www.abunji.ch 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 to shed light on your usual process and set up. In particular, what are you main source of inspiration?

My starting point is usually a topic, an emotion or a theme I am dealing with at the moment. I am a very positive and happy woman, so most of the times it is - let's say - a happy/ positive theme or emotion. I do process bad incidents, bad news, tragic events, but mainly in colour choices and hidden details. My art should flourish the feeling of satisfaction and happiness, mostly throughout the motif, the colour and the balance. From time to time I do have artwork that calls out for more tolerance, but always with a touch of humour – I think. When I do have a motif chosen, I start on making sketches, paper cut-outs and trying out different techniques and different colours on paper. When I decided on the materials and colours, I start working on the first piece, if I like it I start on making similar ones in different sizes and more defined, but still the

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Aline Bunji


Aline Bunji

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same techniques. This is a long process; I still work on series I started 3 years ago and elaborate them. I would say, I have two big sources of inspiration. The first ones - and most important to me are my son and my husband, who is a musician. They give me joy, so much strength and confidence. And the second source is my environment, which would be nature (we live next to the river Rhine and near a forest), the city of Basel with all it's facets from the old-town, throughout the people living, working and visiting it, to the colourful and nice spots to detect. Those are my main sources, but I have to admit, I also get inspiration from the web and inspired by other artists. And if I am allowed the name them, here are (some of them): Tracy Verdugo, Melanie Rothschild, Dina Wakley, Tracy Emin (uuhh, all women), and then some men: Lorenz Spring, Ai Weiwei, Graffmatt and Urchin. For this special issue of ARTiculAction we have selected le regard colorĂŠ and le regard des amie, a couple of stimulating works from your recent production that our readers have already started to get to know in the introductory pages of this article: when walking our readers through the genesis of these paintings we

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Aline Bunji

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

The style of these portraits was a process - I guess it all is, isn't it? that started in 2010 or 2011, I can't remember. For an artists collective project I did a series of quick sketches with a black marker. From that starting point I developed women’s portraits with oil pastels,

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acrylics and black marker, where as the sight/ the eyes (le regard in French) is the central point, but however always remains in black marker drawings. For the series “le regard des amies” I liked the idea to make portraits of my beautiful female friends and to give it a little touch of humour, I told them to do mops and mows. This was real fun, spending time with my friends and painting them was joyful and just


Aline Bunji

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fulfilling. I might conceive this part of my work as a "mixed media excursion into pop-art"... You draw a lot from universal imagery and your pieces are rich of evokative and symbolic elements that allows you to establish direct relations with the viewers that goes beyond any conventional symbolism: 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 that pervades your works?

First of all, I'd like to say I appreciate Thomas Demand and his tremendous artworks. His three-

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Reagan Lake

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dimensional detailed modelphotographs are - I don't have another word than: fantastic. He

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has a gift of working out the smallest details with such great restraint, that’s something I will


Reagan Lake

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never have. I completely agree with Demand and to answer the question I'd like to quote Paul

Watzlawick: "One cannot not communicate." My aim is to leave some room for your own story, to

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question the obvious and sometimes to hide the real motivation behind the work.

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Your works are marked out with intense tones and thoughtful


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Reagan Lake

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nuances: however, while exhibiting a captivating vibrancy, your paintings seem to reject an explicit explanatory strategy. This quality marks out a considerable part of your production: 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?

I would go as far as to say, that I choose my palette only according to my psychological make-up. These days, I feel a lot of green. If you look at the colour green in a spiritual way, green would be the colour for satisfaction, tolerance, balance. And green is for spring, luck and plants. At the moment my topics are - as always - satisfaction and balance, and also tolerance for each other - no matter what gender, religion, culture,..., and a little dull but still current: we are planting an urban garden in our home (on 9th floor). So my colour choices change over time, as my emotions change and come back. I develop texture by adding layers, covering and resting – meaning: I let it stay there for some days, and come back later to see it from a

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different angle and start on layering again. Your works are always pervaded with an effective narrative and the


Reagan Lake

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stories you represent are surrounded by visual beauties. Playing with the evokative power of a wide variety of elements, your collages could be considered as tactile biographies that

accomplish the difficult task of capturing non-sharpness with an universal language, capable of establishing direct relations with the viewers: language is our dominant mode of communication.

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Reagan Lake

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How much important is narrative for your works and how do you develope it?

Storytelling - or maybe I'll call it "the transmission of feelings" is very important for me and in my works. And by listening to critics even if it sometimes feels like a knife in your beating heart - is a key for further development, as well as practice. I learned that it is helpful to work in series and to stop doubting and start creating art for yourself and to enjoy it (this one is not easy, I had to give birth to a child first, before I stopped doubting all the time (I still do a little - of course). Your painting capture nonsharpness with an universal kind of language, capable of bringing to a new level of significance the elusive but ubiquitous relationship between experience and memory, to create direct relations with the spectatorship: 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.

For my paintings and my collageelements I use memories, dreams and reality as a starting point. F.e.

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when we moved to our new apartment on 9th floor I started to create the series "cityscapes" inspired by the view from our apartment. But it's not Basel's silhouette I'm drawing, the silhouettes are taken from different stencils I created myself especially for this series. Almost all stencils I use in my artwork are "homemade", so I really do have the stencil I am looking for in the dimensions I need. My stencil collection is huge, but you can't have enough stencils, can you? Over these five years your works have been showcased in several occasions: 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 might be influenced by friends telling me things like "you could paint men for a change, couldn't you?" or "I like your city-angels, I'm


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sure they would look great in bigger sizes", but that's it. I paint & create what I feel and what I feel like. Thanks a lot for your time and for sharing your thoughts, Aline. Finally, would you like to tell us readers something about your future projects? How do you see your work evolving?

At the moment I am very busy with exhibitions & art fairs and to the end of the year I am planning to do a storytelling painting during a short-story reading. A chummy author will read a short story and I will interpret his story with a lot of colours. In autumn I will organise an art market, where local artists can sell their art directly, and other cultural activities in and around Basel. Mixed Media is not very well known in Switzerland, but starts to get more and more awareness and I am getting more and more busy with my local Mixed Media courses. From time to time I do YouTube tutorials (like "more than 10 ways to use a stencil" f.e.), so the plan is to do at least two more this year. I’ve just started two new series, one is an extension from “cityangels” and the other on

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“numbers”. And last but not least I plan to do a lot of kids craft with my son. Thanks a lot for your time and your commitment.

An interview by Melissa C. Hilborn, curator and Barbara Scott, curator articulaction@post.com


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ARTiculAction Art Review // Special Edition