Geta Brǎtescu, Hannah Höch, Ioannis Koliopoulos, David Noonan, Paola Palavidi, Sergei Parajanov, Artavazd Peleschjan, John Stezaker
April 23 – June 22, 2013
THE MARRIAGE explores the aesthetic and conceptual aspects of the photographic image as an epic and lyrical potential to transform and unveil limitless possible ways for perception and contemplation. Two films are shown by the pioneer directors Artavazd Peleschjan and Sergei Parajanov along with the unique collages of Hannah Höch, John Stezaker, David Noonan, Geta Brătescu, and the multilayered collage-drawings of Paola Palavidi and Ioannis Koliopoulos.
The initial creation of an image is already a transformative process that gives form to the mental and physical experience. This “transubstantiation” unfolds a chain of supplementary incidents that weave together an untitled scenario that waits for reflection. In the end of the creative process, the contradictory traits of the interconnections between the incidents remain in order to shape a balanced sequence. This could be related to the “distance montage” of Artavazd Peleschjan (b. Armenia, 1938), an essential filmmaker who instead of having a linear narrative in his films he creates an intuitive association and a rhythmic movement between the images so as to form a unity. The black and white film The Seasons of the Year (1975), which is shown in the gallery space, depicts the change of seasons in his native country, Armenia, where the relationship between man and nature is emphasized and the latter imposes itself to the former.
In addition, Armenian director Sergei Parajanov’s (1924-1990) rich color film Ashik-Kerib (1988) embraces the symbolical and poetical sense of the image by entering into the story of a wandering minstrel who is refused the hand of a beautiful maiden by her rich father, and who must roam the world for a thousand and one nights in order to marry her. Through the strong use of metaphors, Parajanov creates an ethnographic film that is an assemblage of painting, theatre, dance, music and photography. Moreover, the exhibition includes one collage of Hannah Höch (1889-1978), the famous German Dada artist who was one of the originators of photomontage.
John Stezaker (b. 1949, Worcester, U.K.), who is the master of image subversion, presents four photographic collages, where his discreet intervention on the existing material enhances the uncanny atmosphere of the portraits and reminds us once again the strong effects of visual language. Geta Brătescu (b. 1926, Ploiesti, RO) is known for her long-term multidisciplinary work that develops the discourse between every day life and art practice. In the late 70’s Brătescu made her studio an artistic theme itself, where she aimed to dissolve the boundaries between fiction and reality, daily actions and performance art. THE MARRIAGE presents one work from a collage series that the artist did in 1974, with the title Andruck.
The Australian artist David Noonan (b. 1969, Ballarat, Australia) uses archival photographs that portray a series of events and performances with dancers, mime players and actors. His works are a mixture of collage photography and screen prints that allude to the fictional scenery of theatre and cinema. The young upcoming artists Paola Palavidi (b. 1986, Greece) and Ioannis Koliopoulos (b. 1986, Greece,) are the “image manipulators” who create a jumble of narratives out of used objects and pictures that draw attention to the absurdity of daily life. In the exhibition MARRIAGE they depict a new series of collages combined with drawings where they play with the symbolical language of images by deconstructing any given meaning.
THE MARRIAGE celebrates the dynamics of the photographic image by bringing together a number of artists from different generations and backgrounds so as to make a profound research on the mutable nature of the image as such. Beyond the depiction of multiple representations of reality, these works stimulate the visitor’s imagination while they elicit the poetical elements of visual art.