November 24, 2012 – January 26, 2013
After Michail Pirgelis’ successful participation in the exhibitions A Rock And A Hard Place (3rd Thessaloniki Biennale, 2011) and The Return Call: Singularities in Transit (Qbox gallery, 2011), the artist displays his new body of work that consists of different sculptures under the title Blue Moon.
Michail Pirgelis explores the notion of flight, seeking all over the world the resting places of obsolete airplanes and transforming their remnants into sculptures. Following a different process each time, the artist decontextualizes the fragmented aircraft parts while keeping the aura of the objects intact.
In the exhibition Blue Moon, the artist intervenes in the gallery by adjusting to the space, layers of plastic panels that are used for lining the interior walls of the aircraft. He creates the sculptures Alma II (2012), Blue Moon (2012) and Tomi (2012) that are made up of different airplane fragments in which Pirgelis interferes, thus introducing a new cosmos of shapes and forms.
The artist constructs his familiar environment and invites the viewer to become part of it, allocating him in an unbarred in-between space. The spectator “sleepwalks” in an imaginary room of a continuous transition while he becomes a passive passenger and a distant observer.
Michail Pirgelis explores the fragility and the awe of flying as well as the human desire to defy gravity, which entails also the danger of complete failure. The archaic, mythical dream of flying is unveiled through the minimalistic forms that signify the perpetual technological evolution. The artist’s modernist discourse is reminiscent of the drives that open up new possibilities of looking, thinking and thus acting. Pirgelis creates a “contemporary archaeology” where the aircraft’s pieces are strange amalgams of the past, seen in the present while denoting the future.
Michail Pirgelis was born in Essen (Germany) in 1976 and was raised in Xanthi (Greece). He lives and works in Cologne. He received a Masterclass at Kunstakademie Düsseldorf (2003-2009) under Prof. Rosemarie Trockel. He has been the recipient of the Audi Art Award for ‘New Positions’ (Art Cologne, 2010), the Schloss Ringenberg Grant (2010), the Adolf Loos-Preis of Van den Valentyn Foundation (Cologne, 2008) and Villa Romana Award (Florence, 2007). Solo exhibitions: Los Angeles, Sprüth Magers (London, 2011), Aeromaritime, Artothek (Cologne, 2011), Akropolis, Sprüth Magers (Berlin, 2010), Aerotopie, Förderverein Aktuelle Kunst (Münster, 2006). Selected group exhibitions: Plaisirs du Jardin, Museum Morsbroich (Leverkusen, 2012), A Rock and a Hard Place, 3rd Thessaloniki Biennale (Thessaloniki, 2011), Der Westen leuchtet, Kunstmuseum Bonn (Bonn, 2010), Saar Förderpreis Junge Kunst 2008, Kunstverein Ludwigshafen (2009), Great Expectations, ArtLab21 (Los Angeles, 2008), Quattro Stelle, Villa Romana (Florence, 2007), Michail Pirgelis, Rosemarie Torckel: Schneeweiss, Rohrmeisterei (Schwerte, 2006) and Play, Stadtmuseum (Düsseldorf, 2005).