Eduardo Secci Gallery is pleased to present the exhibition Kindred Visions, a group exhibition including works by eight international artists, who seek to expand the expressive vocabulary and ideation of figuration across painting, sculpture and mixed media.
Curated by the Amsterdam based international curator, Maria Rus Bojan, this exhibition profiles emerging international artists at the forefront of contemporary art, but who have not previously exhibited with the gallery.
Part of an emerging generation of artists active in United States, Canada, India, Georgia, Ukraine, Albania, France and Romania, the selected artists Stephanie Hanes, Abul Hisham, Nika Kutateladze, Daria Dmytrenko, Genti Korini, Radu Oreian, Tincuta Marin and Alin Bozbiciu redefine, each, in their own manner, the figurative genre by developing particular themes and hybrid aesthetics corresponding to the paradigm shifts of our time.
Articulated in synchrony with the evolution of perception and reception paradigms, this new approach to figuration considers representation as a result of an evolving process of visual synthesis that opens new perspectives for understanding the ways in which, the dominant flows crossing the collective consciousness are manifested in the artistic creation.
The recurrence of the myth and the imaginary, metaphysics, brut art, astrology and the occult sciences, magical realism, or the medieval imaginary into contemporary art is ultimately nothing more than an expression of the immeasurable need of the artists to delve into the unconscious, and activate in this way the transcendental dimension of their creation. This type of symbolic thinking manifested through particular artistic visions offers genuine ways to access another reality of the world, a reality where ancestral myths, symbols and archetypes intertwine a poetic narrative that reveals new truths about contemporary life.
The exhibition Kindred Visions proposes a staged visual choreography of eight distinct artistic discourses, in a surprising articulation of associations and correspondences that are meant to emphasize the deep meanings of the contents camouflaged in fantastic representations and compositions that abound of personal mythologies. The artists’ works create worlds that are not only blending imagination and reality, but create the possibility of a better, more-than-human future, open to transformative experiences and metamorphosis of the self.
Touching the metaphysical realm through a hybrid sculptural vocabulary, the Canadian artist Stephanie Hanes questions ideas of embodiment, subjectivity, identity and gender expression from a feminist perspective.
Their work examines the rich concept of metamorphosis, which is used as a vital lens to explore the formal tensions of embodying fluid identities, by means of symbolism, allegory and contemporary associations.
Abul Hisham’s mysterious painterly compositions and installations explore the notions of desire, death and memory. Inspired by subjects from his native India, his body of work is an exploration of shared histories, touching complex topics such as estrangement, hierarchy and power, including religious conflicts and inequality of the caste systems. Hisham’s interest in the metaphysical expression, religion and mythology finds expression in the medium of dry pastel, which he has been using over the last decade. The experience of working with the powdered pigment is like sculpting from dust, recalling the Christian and Islamic belief that humans were created from dust to which they return after death. Some of the pastel pigments that Hisham uses are made from mined minerals, themselves part of the cycle of creation and transformation over millennia.
Nika Kutateladze’s practice engages with subjects from his country, Georgia, approaching key themes such as home, identity, nostalgic disorientation, dislocation and trauma. Often presented in extraordinary settings that dramatize a gloomy post-Soviet aesthetics, Kutateladze’s paintings are meaningful depictions of situations and characters from a disillusioned world. With the ability to capture multiple facets of a personality in a single portrait, and multiple stories in a single scene, the artist sees painting as a medium to convey stories of his community, highlighting at the same time the humanistic dimension of his expression. Narratives drawn from his local context are reimagined through a contemporary lens to address urgent issues related to resilience, precarious living conditions and dehumanization.
The painting practice of the Ukrainian artist Daria Dmytrenko explores the visual expression of the subconscious. Never using preparatory drawings or sketches, she allows her intuitive impulses to bring up her deepest memories and transform them into sophisticated visual compositions. They often take the form of anthropomorphic creatures or some kind of mythological characters, merging with spectral dreamscapes and cosmological fantasies. Surreal responses to a heightened sense of reality or simply personal responses to a direct experience of the natural world, Dmytrenko’s paintings are more than oneiric expressions, they talk in a metaphoric register about the current condition.
Genti Korini articulates an original conceptual language that lies at the intersection between representation and abstraction, formalism and social commentary, media and design. Inspired by the history of painting and modernist architecture, Korini’s work emphasizes the relationship between aesthetics and social imagination, exploring how these elements are manifested in the juxtaposition of modernity with modernism with the cultural and historical framework of his native country Albania. Revealing the aspects of discontinuity between reality and the projection of identity, through narratives that speak about alienation and hybridisation, Korini’s characters are reduced to their act of the pose as figures emptied of content. The artist’s emphasis is always on the staged pose – not on the portrayed figure, while the abstraction in the background with its culturally charged elements is meant to support the surprising association between the narratives.
Drawing on medieval, surrealist, and natural science sources, Radu Oreian’s practice traces a return to mythological narratives but filled with contemporary detail. In his painting, Oreian dissolves the distinctions between the different regimes of representation, forging holistic connections that alludes the metaphysical. Using a variety of techniques and mediums, the artist explores how fractal algorithmic motifs spread into the very fabric of figuration and expression of corporeality, creating a multifaceted universe that is both infinite and molecular. The sacred and the profane, the spirit and the flesh, the natural and the artificial are intertwined, marbling in and out of each other in compositions that incorporate surprising details and twist of narratives.
Despite her young age, the Romanian artist Tincuta Marin became known for her formally inventive practice that combine painting and sculpture, as well as figuration and abstraction into visual and emotional narratives. Often depicting herself in seemingly impossible, enigmatic, or invented situations that reference art historical sources, her work conveys emotions and psychological states of mind that reveal her inner tensions and hidden desires. With an extraordinary talent for composition, she sets up the combination of painting and sculpture as playful intrigues, re-enacting in fact the contradictions and struggles of everyday life. Eager to grasp and represent the deep nature of things and restore its spontaneity, Marin’s visual vocabulary is sensitive to the pre-renaissance motifs and imagery of chivalric romance combined with primal expressions of brut art, and surrealist strategies of disrupting the realistic representation.
Alin Bozbiciu's works articulate a personal mythology in which reality and imagination merge into magical visual painterly installations. In his elaborate compositions, the artist draws upon references from art history, mythological tropes and theatrical imagery. Making poignant existential statements about the contemporary experience, Alin Bozbiciu articulates a symbolic discourse that goes beyond the boundaries of representation and of figurative painting.
Inspired by old master compositions, which depict human bodies in allegoric movement, the artist challenges viewers to immerse themselves in an imaginary world with a poetic dimension, in which myth and metaphor prevail. The spontaneity of his pictorial gesture accentuates the dynamic between the soft, restricted color palette, and the vigorous darker colors, offering a versatile and refreshing perspective to the medium of painting.