ADA AVETIST |
| KSENJA JOVISEVIC | FORLANE 6STUDIO ERA VATI | STACY ISENBARGER |
Issue 00 Winter 2013
Made in mind is an independent publishing project dedicated to the promotion of young contemporary visual art. Its focus is to provide visibility to young art , particularly for lesser known visual artists to showcase their work to an international audience which includes artists, galleries, museums, curators and others interested in art. The aim is to become bridge between the art world and artists.
CONTENTS 02 | ADA AVETIST 06 | ERA VATI 10 | FORLANE 6 STUDIO 15 | STACY ISENBARGER 20 | KSENIJA JOVISEVIC
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COVER | Ada Avetist photo by GJ. van ROOIJ
ADA AVETIST What initially inspired you to start making art? The drive for freedom, naively speaking. But actually freedom has for me more to do with subverting rules and traditions. Even if unintentionally, it makes me realize that I perceive the world as an open-source. This means that I don´t stop myself from making use of whatever resources I find i.e. in terms of art methods of appropriation and assimilation. For me art deals a lot with questions concerning ideology, the reasons why someone does something. Whereby my ideology is an utopian idea of individuality and anarchy. What were some of the significant events that brought you where you are now as an artist? Surely my educational path, which started early in traditional arts ( I had ballet classes, piano classes and learned aquarelle painting before the age of 13) and continued in tailoring school for five years, before I started an education in contemporary art practice. Moving away from Vienna few years ago - to Bremen first, then to Amsterdam, Bern and now to London - as well had a great impact on me. But most significantly was the fact that my mother escaped from soviet Russia in the early eighties. In Warsaw she met my father and 02 | MADE IN MIND
together they fled to Vienna. My mother was pregnant with me when we arrived in Schwechat and got to the refugee camp in Traiskirchen, before moving to Vienna. Sometimes I wonder what I would have done if I was not born in the “west”. I might have chosen a more secure path and feel insecure about it. Where else now I could be operating in a rather precarious profession and feel very secure about it, considering the potentials that I can disclose and thoughts that I can develop. What subjects do you deal with in your art? I often have troubles to talk about my work in terms of subjects. I see my practice more as a way of thinking and acting in reality. It is mostly a direct result of marking and assimilating the presents spatially (as in territory) and historically. I hope to make somebody question my decisions in order to revise ones own thinking pattern. I am working on a very subtle and slow process of subjectivation, which I hope to be able to open myself to and transfer onto the recipient. To quote Alfred Gell from his book Art and Agency (1998): “In place of symbolic communication, I place all the emphasis on agency, intention, causation, result and transformation. I view art as a system of action, intended to change the world rather than
encode symbolic about it.”
How did you come to work with the mediums you use? To me the medium is always another instance of the content, it means that whatever piece I am making, I always aim to be critical to the medium, or subvert the medium. I as well try to exploit the potential of the medium as much as possible, reminding the viewer that it is an artwork that is being looked at instead of an illusion of something else. I am talking about a particular self-referentiality or self-awareness. I do not want to make a piece that ignores its medium. As an example my concrete sculptures refer to their own “concreteness” and the implications incorporated in it. To me this is a minimum requirement I have to have when making a piece of art. Tell us about C.C. and 4x4 C.C. is a piece which allows me to go every time through the same process of casting a corner, followed by its displacement, splitting and disposal. It is for me a very powerful work which cost me a lot of energy while only exposed once without a claim for permanence. Each piece is unique to its origin and process as well as formal details such as scale, density and resulting split.
C.C. IV portland cement, zilversand, wood 2012
I have made seventeen in the past two years, and while the series is growing, I observe a network of corners connecting by mapping their points of origin, which makes the piece unfolded over the course of years. I think it works similar to Jarosław Kozłowski´s performance “Continuum”. 4X4 is operating much more on site – it is an outdoor piece with which I materialize a geometrical super structure that is overlaying the geographic coordinate system of a specific location. I work with satellite pictures from wikimapia and various gps coordinate converter to calculate points and take screenshots. This work is quite fragmented and even though I am developing the map projection (shadow mapping) to be fitted over the overall globe, the concrete cast 4X4 is a tool to interact with a non-specific site and bring the calculated structure towards a real location.
What about shadow mapping Initially I developed a drawing of doubling squares, which extend diagonally into four directions. So the measurements of all squares are based on the drawing, starting with the possibly smallest square I could draw with my push pen. For me this is 0.5 x 0.5 mm as I needed it to have a clear center, from which I draw a 1 x 1 cm square, from which center I again draw a 2x2 cm square and so on. Virtually this can grow infinitely big as well as infinity small. Soon I started thinking about it as black squares covering a surface, and then filling the squares with concrete as I go (4X4). The notion of a piece spanning over the whole planet is a rather utopic idea which I am materializing only in small non-linear fragments. I also don’t see it as a project but more as a method to gain a holistic view onto geographical space.
Where do you get the ideas for your work? It is all one idea that transforms and takes different shapes, which very much depends on what situations I am facing, meaning that I work according with the flow of my experiences. I have a drive which is pushing me in a certain direction. I can be inspired by a conversation as much as by a book, movie, dream, art – everything that generates thought. Usually I experience the transformation of this idea progressively, one step leads to the other, but as well progressing towards thoughts I maybe had several years ago. That way I know that it is an intrinsically never changing idea. However, I can´t really tell what exactly this idea is, but I am very addicted and dedicated to it, as well as curious and impatient about its unraveling.
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What role does arts funding have? I do not rely on arts funding. I seek support from my family and friends and do side jobs. I am very careful with being officially funded and with selling my work. I don´t want to become governmental property and I am afraid to lose my institutional autonomy, generally speaking. But ultimately it depends on the conditions attached to certain money. Could you tell us something about black square unfolded? It is another extraction from the idea of shadow mapping. “Unfolding a void in space” is to me a gesture that is very poetic in a romantic way. I wanted to simplify the idea by using only paper painted with black acrylic paint, which I glued as a wall-paper to the gallery wall. In such way the monumentality of the work is rendered temporal because its removal will cause it to be ripped down from the wall. However, I applied the work not in a gallery but in the staircases of a municipality building in Vienna, Karl-Marx-Hof, which is a rather huge living complex built in the 1930´s. This becoming the context of the work suddenly opened up a set of problems regarding public space, vandalism, authorship, the spectator, amongst others. I have not resolved this work yet but I might publish its documentation in the form of a book. What are you working on at the moment? Currently I am interest in archives. I recently collaborated with the archive of the living art museum in Reykjavik, where I found documents from former eastern european artist and used a selection to exhibit together with my sculptural work. This opened up a big field in where to move. I am right now figuring out my standing point toward the function of historical archives and ways to us the material. I am as well working on a manifesto (or a series of manifestos) titled “The right to undo”. 04 | MADE IN MIND
C.C. - Catalog
FOR UNIT 4X4 portland cement, quartz sand and wood 2013
BLACK SQUARE UNFOLDED acrylic paint on paper, permanent wallpaper-glue 2012
4X4 UNIT II portland cement, sand, soil 2013
Ada Avetist is an Austrian artist based in Amsterdam, Vienna and London. She was born 1984 in Lower Austria, Baden where her parents had immigrated to, from Russia and Poland, and very soon moved to Vienna, where Avetist grew up. She is a sculptor and installation artist, who is working within the reference field of conceptual and minimal art while redefining space and its systematic qualities within human thinking. After her diploma in tailoring she studied Art History and Philosophy at Vienna University before she moved to Amsterdam in 2009 and started a Bachelor in Fine Arts at the Rietveld Academy. In 2010 she took one semester in China, Xiamen University Art College and exhibited two times in the Chinese European Art Center. In 2012 she graduated in Fine Arts at the Gerrit Rietveld Academy and started a Master in Fine Arts at the University of the Arts Bern. Exhibiting since 2010, Avetist had public presentation so far in Switzerland, Austria, The Netherlands, Germany, Iceland, Poland and France. Since 2011 she is taking part in establishing an artistic investigation under the title â€œThe Hard-Coreâ€?, with which she is developing new curatorial techniques and has participated in exhibitions such as the Zinkovy Arts Festival in Czech Republic. www.adaavetist.at 05 | MADE IN MIND
How did you start making art? As far back as I can remember, I always wanted to be an artist. Never questioned what else I would be. I went to art high school at age 14 before I attended different art colleges. How would you best define your approach to video art? I started as a painter but I have always felt that I missed the time, the possibility to show something in motion. I define my videos as ‘moving painting’. Rather than having a narrative I show a moment in motion or illustrate a thought. In this meaning, if you like, my videos are moving diaries demonstrating a personal approach to video art. What influences and inspires you? Good art inspires me as well as modern science. I love listen to contemporary physicists’ theories about multiple dimensions and parallel universes. In terms of artist, I like many different ones, from Rembrandt through Rinus van de Velde , Peter Greenaway to Pipilotti Rist and Ron Mueck. I am doing an artist residency in Rotterdam and I am very much influenced by Dutch art at the moment. 06 | MADE IN MIND
What kind of topics do you prefer to deal with your work? I am interested in personal identity. How social norms are integrated into personalities and how this dynamism may change. I am also interested in relationships and personal boundaries that we set in relationships. I believe these two themes are very much connected in many levels. Tell us about Walker My initial inspiration was the experience of living in different countries in the same time. Personal Identity is not something we are born with. Being part of different social systems in the same time, meeting different expectations may affect people’s personal identity. I wanted to share these thoughts through a mixed media installation, connecting two mediums I am familiar with. The painted heads represent the mind; the video bodies the physical presence. Each character has two heads; the bodies walk from one head to the other and back. Furthermore, each character behaves differently when joining different heads. Initially I wanted to add boxes and packages to be carried by each character but I changed my mind.
One of the most frequent themes in your work is the relationship between people; in your opinion which are the relevant aspects of human relationships in our historical background? Human relationships have been important ever since human beings began to live together in groups. In our contemporary global world technology and internet have a huge impact on human relationships. Today’s technological world is forcing us to rethink the nature of personal connections and intimacy. I believe the changing nature of communication is one of the major issues in contemporary human relationships. I remember the days before internet when I would get 10 phone calls per day and maybe a couple of letters, and felt exhausted by the pace of communication. Now we’ve traded the telephone for other connection points and I do most of my communication thorough Social media, iPhone or Skype. Could you explain Knots ? Knots is inspired by the British poet and psychologist R. D. Laing. Laing explains in his first book how we all exist in the world as beings, defined by others who carry a model of us in their minds,
just as we carry models of them in our minds. His book called â€œKnotsâ€? is a series of dialoguescenarios impasses in various kinds of human relationships. In my video I connect my poems or sentences inspired by Laing with my other passion; chess. The video shows 8 identical persons similar to chess figures. The game of chess was consciously designed to represent the world of transformations on a restricted field of action. Chess for me is a symbolic game. It mirrors our relationship with the outer world. The chess figures represent the forces of nature, light and dark, good and evil, opposing forces which permit the manifestation of all things material. Each figure represents a different position, power and possibility in the game of life. In the soundtrack of my video eight voices repeat different sentences, dark and happy thoughts. The video originally exhibited behind a chessboard. How important is your environment in shaping your work? Environment is not a major component of my work however I prefer inner and intimate spaces to public and large. I usually exhibit a video installation more than once. They are site specific in term of size and the objects around them.
WALKER mixed media installation 2007
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WALKER (Frame) mixed media installation 2007
WALKER mixed media installation 2007
KNOTS Video installation 2013
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CROSSING Video installation 2007
What do you hope people will take away from your art? I would like to inspire people to do things that inspire them. What are you currently working on? I am working on a two-screen video installation. The screens will cross each other at a right angle. The videos will show faces. I am also preparing black and white cubes from tiles to project onto them.
Era Vati was born in 1977 in Budapest. She completed her MA at the University of Arts in Budapest and MA in Art and Media Practice at the University of Westminster in London. Her videos and mixed media installations focus on personal boundaries in relationships. The installations are usually site specific, connecting mediums like aquarelle, video projections and real objects. www.eravati.com
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FORLANE 6 STUDIO How did you meet, how long have you been working together? Mathieu and I met 3 years ago in a small town in Brittany after my Degree Show, we have been preparing this project since then by renovating the boat. When we had enough saving we left our jobs and went to live on our sailing boat Forlane 6 in Crete for a year to implement our ideas and dedicate ourselves entirely to our artistic practice. How do you manage creative process together? Mathieu is an autodidact artist. He studied at the school of Merchant Navy in Marseille. Therefore he has many skills in engineering or electrics that I do not have. So we are very complementary regarding our respective field of expertise. We shape the primary ideas together and then depending on which skills are needed we take on different task. I do not mind the repetitive aspects of certain works which need an accumulation process and he enjoys more the machinery side. I am often the one working towards increasing our visibility, writing the texts about the work and organizing logistic to deliver works to exhibitions.
Underwater, most of time I take the picture and he installs the work or activates it, then we discuss the editing together and I am the one loving to be in front of a screen all day. Can you talk more about your idea of art? The first contemporary art piece I showed Mathieu was the video of Fischli and Weiss, the way things goes. He introduced me the work of Julien Berthier and we both love the work of Roman Signer. Our idea of art is related to the moving image and the transformation of the purposes of objects. We enjoy works that incorporates humor and experimentation. Works that are renewing the familiar and deal with the uncanny are the one touching us the most. What subjects do you deal with in your art? We deal with the relationship of the natural and the artificial. Our works intends to create artificial natures. We are looking to reunite these poles and work against the idea that the manufactured should be opposed to the organic and that one is evil and the other weak and fragile. Our works deals with an environmental atmosphere rather than the discourse.
We are not interested in making didactic or political piece, we are only intending to expand in this contemporary context on the idea that nothing is fixed and that everything is constantly undergoing certain mutations. For example we are fascinated by projects such as the glowing plants of Anthony Evans or by a company such as emerging objects, which developed a 3D printed wood. Tell us about Posidonia and Blow Dry, What has inspired this series? The Posidonia sea grass was the inspiration for the sculptures. This marine plant is found in the Mediterranean and is a habitat for marine life. The prairies of this plant are slowly disappearing. In the sculptures, domestic objects are recovered by stripes of paper or plastic imitating the sea grassâ€™ shape. When submerged, the sculptures seem to metamorphose and become organic creatures. In the work Blow Dry a small engine activates a propeller every 10 seconds that is making a wig rotate. The shape and movement of the object mimics the one of marine animal such as the jellyfish. The work appears to be imitating marine life with mechanical 11 | MADE IN MIND
elements and synthetic materials. The mise en scene of these artificial natures intends to imagine the future of abandoned materials and objects left to wonder in a context different to the one they were built for. The work investigates the confusing relationship between human production and the depth of the sea. Where do you find your biggest inspiration? I would say our inspiration comes as much from the experience of living on the sea and wandering around deserted islands and empty underwater spaces than the new post in Wired or the last sci-fi short film encountered on vimeo.
Which photographers were driving forces in developing your aesthetic? We are interested in constructed sculptural photographic work such the one of Philippe Ramette, Rune Guneriussen or Riitta Paivalainen. We use photography as a part of our practice but we are not photographers, so we are very much inspired by work playing on the frontier between different mediums.
residencies and contest regularly but it might take a while until something opens up. We know it is a long process to be a part of this specific system. What do you hope people will take away from your art? The same that we experience with works we enjoy, we like our perception to be stimulated and renewed. We like to be surprised and intrigued.
What role does arts funding have? For now none. Mathieu has gone back to work. He is now in Angola for two month. I am teaching scuba diving on the side. We apply to
POSIDONIA Giclee Prints 2012
LAUNDRY Giclee Prints 2012
What themes are you working with now? We are now continuing to work on manufactured organic-like creatures in a smaller scale. The works will take place in actual aquarium and be interactive. We are working on smaller versions of sculptures activated by air pressure and light.
POSIDONIA Giclee Prints 2012
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Forlane 6 Studio is composed by a Duo. Mathieu Goussin, was born in 1985. He lives in France and studied at the National School of Merchant Navy in Marseille. Worked ten years in the industry before dedicating his technical skills to the art field. Hortense Le Calvez, was born in 1988. She lives in France and studied at the Rietveld Academy of Amsterdam BA from Wimbledon College of Art of London. In response to our time of alarming climate change, the work presents a deliberate immersion of the objects that compose our daily surroundings. The certainty that in a near future, global issues will bring disastrous consequences on the environment creates a disturbing atmosphere. However the mass production rate of artificial materials seems unstoppable. It overflows well beyond land frontiers and the seas surface, as it penetrates the depth of a distant and foreign space.
The Studioâ€™s intent is to investigate phenomenon imposed by the underwater space through the medium of sculptures and installations. When submerged, the objects seem to metamorphose and become organic creatures. Their role in space is no longer fixed and static. Buoyancy and currents influence the formal characteristics of the objects because their behavior is dictated by an element other than the one they were conceived for. While engaging with a time and movement different than the one on land, they become part of this foreign world. This weightless and slow aesthetic contradicts the usual way objects are consumed and disposed of in an inconsiderate speed. The work is inspired by the conceptual time sculpture of Roman Signer as well as the poetic photography of Susanna Majuri. Our practice encompasses different medium such as photography, sculpture and installation. www.forlane6studio.com
BLOW DRY Giclee Prints 2013
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STACY ISENBARGER Tell us about your background. I have lived in various regions around the US, but consider my time growing up in South Carolina the most formative to my background. Growing up as a Southeastern Suburban Catholic, I was constantly confronted by Catholic iconography that my Baptist peers thought made me heathen despite their welcoming concrete driveways. These environments of confused judgment still influence the ways in which I navigate my own creative installations, but I often acknowledge that I have been taught well to project the best side of myself through the material world. Whether I was presented through appropriate dress, catholic diligence, or a clean-cut green lawn, my social and cultural expression was always addressed through material and object first and foremost. Educated in the visual arts—primarily focusing on sculpture and printmaking—I continue to selfeducate on the language of art as a professor of Art + Design at the University of Idaho in Moscow, Idaho. You frequently use the religious iconography, why? Working with religious iconography has offered me the opportunity to question social and political awareness but in a more reverent atmosphere. One of my most influential teachers, David Detrich, once ask me to draw out a line
diagram with “Zen” on one side and “Disneyland” on the other. He’d say to choose a place within this scale that best balanced out my desired concept and to make formal and material decisions that support this place. I always felt that working from a point closer to the “Zen” side has been a more authentic point of departure for me. Religious imagery can have a forceful impact but through a more quiet delivery. I also rely on the language of religious iconography because it is loaded with various interpretations. Belief aside, the environment you’ve lived in will dictate how you read a symbol or spiritual figure. During a recent residency in Jetpur, a small village near Jodphur, India, I tried to communicate visually through iconic symbols. Surrounded by spirited children painting in an abandoned schoolhouse, I was struck by how awkward it was to see one child painting swastikas along side my line drawings of Stars of David. With my lacking verbal skills, I was attempting to share an image that I hoped could communicate the equal beauty of male and female and a 7 year old in turn, wanted to communicate a blessing that I couldn’t read as one. Two shapes built from basic line structures where at conflict for me but beautiful to her. Our gestures where authentic as we created together but our visual language had shortcomings that couldn’t be
bridged without further understanding of each other’s perspectives. Our images could provoke, but not justify themselves alone. The layered history of religious iconography is rich for communicative disruptions as well as sharing the beauty of a spiritual awareness. Through my work, I explore these possibilities. How do you make it? What do you hope people take away from your art? When I create, I explore a variety of mixed-media approaches that produce sensory connections for viewers to their environment. I assume that most viewers won’t immediately touch art, but they will reflect on their own physical understanding of the material they see, and in turn, reflect on their own negotiations of metaphorical space. In our typical environments, we tend to experience imagery and media through a lens of complacency, but its refreshing and potentially generative when we are cued to see an icon, familiar object, etc. in a way other than generally accepted. I also play with barriers and layers of information to suggest a place where a shift in ideation is helpful for further understanding. I want viewers to walk away from my work reflecting on some aspect of variance in themselves— and in particular, those moments where, through their own unique cultural judgment, they address social 15 | MADE IN MIND
constructs from a more specific perspective. I never tire of visual language’s mixed messages and meanings. I rely on viewers’ considerations that dance between soft and hard, warm and cold, domestic and industrial, etc. to create a sense of place where one can mentally navigate one’s own physiological deviations in understanding. How important is your environment in shaping your work? Understanding sculpture seems impossible for me without considering the environment it exists in. As a physical manifestation, I have to understand it through my body as I reference my experience of the space it inhibits. And as this happens, I always thinking about my place, how I occupy it, and how my understanding of that space impacts the way I read the work. When I create, I will often reflect on various cultural and social impacts within my environment. Aspects of a scaled sense of freedom, familiarity, and memory of experience are all drawn together to communicate a place for others to reflect on their own environmental perspective as well. Due to this, an undercurrent of my work is to always share an understanding of place. What art do you most identify with? It’s not that I identify with a specific art or form of art, it’s what I look at and for and live with, meaning what I may read and surround myself with. There are many things that contribute to the investigations I undertake visually in and out of the studio—poetry, published writings on social practice, religious spaces, found and incidental images, and many
HER SERIES Stitched drawing on found image 2012
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things that are unexpected and not sought out could fulfill my needs and inspire me at any moment. Tell us about Canary Marys, what has inspired this artwork? I had recently been invited to a new moon gathering ceremony where women were celebrating winged spirit animals & even though I’m not accustomed to this type of ritualistic practice, I was touched by the beauty of women gathered to celebrate the spirit of something outside themselves. The directive sensibilities some shared through their own visitations of these spirits in their dreams, meditations, etc. seemed strangely familiar to Catholic stories I’ve been raised by. I wanted to make work that spoke of my navigation of this event.
I came across the figurine of an uncloaked praying woman at a thrift store, identified her as a more humble vision of the Virgin Mary, and made a mold of her. I had planned to pair her with another carved bird form I had made and to create a chorus of sorts with multiple forms in an installation. But as the piece developed, I realized that cloaking the figurine yellow tool dip could suggest both bird and Mary at once. In Creature Comforts (Canary Marys), as markers of an open path, the Canary Marys reflect nature and spirit at odds and in communion. These forms where paired with a rock as a silhouetted barrier of itself and itself stuck between two sides. I’ve been asked if the Canary Mary is meant to represent me, but I think the rock is
perhaps a more suited stand-in for my role in this environment. In Her series you drew Mother Mary’s veil, what does this action mean? My Her series is still an in-progress body of work, but as I form it into various thematic groupings, the embroidered blue veil and golden halo continue to be sewn on top of various images of women. As this work evolves, I continue to question this drawn action. Using the cloak of Mary within these images, I’m reflecting on stories of apparitions and a desire for feminine guidance. Individually each image is a play on an individual’s choice or potential. Collectively these images act as layered voices at odds with innocence and expectation. HER SERIES Stitched drawing on found image 2012
What were some the significant happenings that brought you to where you are now as an artist? At an early age, I was brought repeatedly, among thousands, to a site in Conyers, Georgia, USA where a woman was supposedly having apparitions of the Virgin Mary on the 13th of ever month in late 1980s. Today she is considered a false profit of the church, and I’m still confused by what I witnessed in this space, but since then, stand-ins for Mary have come to represent a childlike desire to trust the spiritual structures in my environment. I think this plays out often in the work I make, but it’s influences are manifested in various forms through my work. I keep two photos in particular from this experience in my studio. The first is a polaroid photo taken of the sun at this location on the day of an apparition. The image captures three shadowed forms that some took as a miracle representing the Gates of Heaven, but this is just light reflecting of the camera’s shutter. It’s a simple shortcoming of the device. The second image is of a woman with a fantastic perm holding up a photo she captured at Conyers to a small crowd of emotional onlookers. Within the skewed image, there is a faint silhouette of what could be (or could not be) a familiar veiled spiritual presence. For me, this image represents the beauty of not knowing everything about what an image can represent. I have these images next to each other in my studio and challenge myself through the small space between them. I.M.M.I.G.R.A.N.T. fabrics, string, & embroidery hoop 2012 CANARY MARY painted steel, chuck of asphalt, stick, plaster, & yellow tool dip 2013
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That gap represents a place where knowledge of the theater of religion is in conflict with a desire to trust the unknown. I want to make art about this sort of space and create environments where we are left to consider the weight of both sides of understanding— the authenticity of the known and the beauty of the unknown. Could you talk about I.M.M.I.G.R.A.N.T. ? In my series I.M.M.I.G.R.A.N.T., the sewn golden Stars of David spell out the word immigrant. These works address problematic labeling in conflict with a collective notion what is a rightful home environment. For instance, in I.M.M.I.G.R.A.N.T. (Heritage Status), this text hangs as a quilted curtain or vine-like root system below a white picket fence cross-
stitched on a “Home, Sweet, Home” banner. As a foundational-structure to an idealized suburban American home landscape, the word is meant to question of whom—if any—have a right to this label of home here. Judaism isn’t something associated with some US states’ growing interests in targeting immigrants by making anyone suspect responsible for showing paperwork of their nationality—instead a Christian, Hispanic culture tends to be the most targeted—however, I am concerned about this “need” to decide who belongs in a culture built from immigration. As an iconic devise used to segregate “the other” from the privileged, the domestic yellow star is meant to readdress this politically charged title as we reassess where we come from and where we even belong.
What are you currently working on? I’m currently working on a series I’m calling “What Man Builds, Man Can Confuse.” By labeling or projecting more than one meaning to an object, I’m building more poetic forms that reflect on broken institutional structures and confused human perspectives. I’ve been cross-stitching confused directives and diagrams that play off of “Do & Don’ts” in conflict for this series as well. I’m also working in collective called BASK. We’re incorporating movement, 3-D form, poetry, and music in community-based practice and performances to address social projections and sources of empowerment for women in the Arts.
Stacy Isenbarger was born in Michigan in 1982, USA and currently resides in Moscow, Idaho, USA. She is an Assistant Professor of Sculpture in the Department of Art + Design at University of Idaho. Stacy received her Master of Fine Art Degree in Sculpture from the Lamar Dodd School of Art at The University of Georgia in 2009 and received her Bachelor of Fine Art Degree in Sculpture at Clemson University in 2005. In recent years, Stacy Isenbarger’s motivation for creating dialog through imagery and form has shifted from expressing poetic narratives into highlighting perceived boundaries built from one’s environment and cultural understanding. Her new approach is driven from her interactions with varied communities in various regions of the United States and a vibrant village community in Jetpur, Rajasthan, India. Shared personal narratives and spiritual perspectives from others continue to challenge her and push her work into new directions. Through interplay of media and iconography, She develops artworks that allow viewers to consider both the power and shortcomings of these outside dynamics. Her work challenges viewers’ assumptions and offers new perspectives of their own cultural and spiritual judgments. Stacy Isenbarger’s artworks incite viewers through dynamic interplay between media, space, and cultural signifiers. Her work simultaneously investigates ideas and materials, transforming the familiar in new and thought provoking ways. Her philosophically charged works challenge our assumptions of our environment and the cultural barriers we build for ourselves. www.stacyisenbarger.com
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What is your artistic background and what determines how you choose process and medium? After I finished High School for Design in 2006 I have started my studies at the Faculty of Fine Arts in Belgrade, and in October 2012. I gained the MA degree in Painting. Experimentation with different medium was always in the core of my interest. I remember one exhibition I have visited during my preparation for the Academy of Arts and how the ungraspable process of creation of one particular work left me intrigued and inspired. After this strong impression, consciously or unconsciously, I was interested in provoking the same feeling with my work, and since then Iâ€™m not stopping playing with the materials. Preferring oil base, I paid a lot of attention and importance to the surface, for what I usually use a paper, handmade or dematerialized, never a perfect square format. On the other side, process in my work, as a medium, is determined by what I want to say, also in relation to how I imagine that the final result should be. 20 | MADE IN MIND
How do you get from idea to final product? I look, read, feel, think, then, I try to create. It is always from the personal to the universal, from the concrete to the abstract. Sometimes, for an idea, you need a year or more to mature, but sometimes
it comes in a second. First and only I deal with things that occupied me on some level, and, if I donâ€™t find the answer in the process, I prolong the question in another series of work. At the end, everything is a product of persistence.
ASPIRATION Oil pastel on handmade surface 2012
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You said ‘’art is a type of therapy that offers a possibility for self - cognition and development of personality’’. Could you explain that a bit more? The creative process as a way of individualization is the process of psychological maturation of personality, self-realization and individual construction; gradual path to maturation of the human soul to the highest possible range of development and unity of its conscious and subconscious parts. In other words, individualization gives an incentive to quest sincerely and relentlessly, of the “right” primordial Myself in me.
What subjects do you deal with in your art? In my work motifs and stories vary all the time, but the main subject, of each, is the innate desire, tendency, the constant striving to attain the ideal. Fanaticism of compulsive perfection, one of the deepest roots of civilization. Could you tell us about When if not now? “When if not now” is the name of one of my solo exhibitions in 2013, inspired by the Talmudic adage that says: “If I am not for myself, who will be? If I am solely for myself, what am I?
If not now - when?” The concept was dealing with impatience of the contemporary man, what significantly defines his view of the world, as well as the amount of pleasure and happiness he is able to feel. At times, in that continuous haste for things that would make our life “ideal”, we often neglect it as it passes by. What do you hope people will take away from your art? I hope they will take more from what is inside them. As I mentioned, I deal just with things that touch me personally , but during the creation process I
INNER SPACE Mixed media 2013
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try to filter everything that is just and only my projection, in order to transfer it on the upper, collective level; eager not to sound pathetic or dramatic, I leave a lot of space and freedom for the viewer to project, as in a mirror. How important is your environment in shaping your work? I grown up in a peaceful, small town surrounded with the line of horizon, also with the unlimited time and space for myself. Things that were surrounding you in your childhood determinates, attach, psychologically, you and your work for all your life. House where you grown up, environment around you, love and warm you felt, or you did not, culture, stories, fears, doubts, wishes. You can rise above, but some things will always be deep inside you, screaming to get out. My interests are not directed in what is happening on the global, political level of society. I am only interested in what is going on inside a man. What do you say about aspiration? “Aspiration”, beside the fact that it can be the universal name of my entire work, is a title of a big series of drawings created at the end of the art studios; the biggest moment of existential anxiety. Works raises the question of survival, stability, endurance, and also finding the ideal balance in all fields of life. In the thematization of psychological aspects of existential philosophy, “just enough” is taken “as necessary” for the survival of the picture.
ASPIRATION Oil pastel on handmade surface 2012
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What art do you most identify with? I do not like to be identified with anyone or anything particularly, but of course, there is a lot of artists who had certain influence on me. Some of my favorites are Robert Ryman, Franz West, Felix Gonzalez Torres, Agnes Martinâ€Ś I can say I prefer minimalism, where the work is set out to expose the essence, eliminating all the non-essential forms, features or concepts. Someone told me that this series of work (the work you published), remind him on Blinky Palermo. It is possible, also love his work.
Ksenija Jovisevic was born in Belgrade on 16 March 1988. After the secondary School for Design she finished Bachelor and Master studies at the Faculty of Fine Arts, graduated in 2012. www.jovisevicksenija.blogspot.com
TIME DELAY Oil pastel on handmade surface 2013
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