Beyond Nostalgia Hijack
 
Konstantinos Giotis, Eva Papamargariti, Konstantinos Pettas,
Marios Stamatis, Valinia Svoronou
 
Curated by: Konstantinos Giotis 
 
Duration: 17.04.21 - 26.06.21
  
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The group exhibition Beyond Nostalgia Hijack through the different practice of each artist develops a speculative network of affect as a hypothetical landscape with poetic points of departure. The state of numbness that is often experienced in moments of pause can expand the capacity for reflectivity or transformation inherent in the mundane, as well as the disruptive potential of the absurdity of banal activities and thoughts. Themes of irony, fragility, romanticism, futurism, investigations on technological progress, nature and identity permeate the show. The participating artists through the emotional and political connotations of materials and the historicity of their mediums examine the human condition in the contemporary fluctuating landscape and their possibilities as allegorical mechanisms of disentanglement in the ever-changing environment.

  

Movement I

The grid is suddenly exposed beneath their feet, expanding exponentially along the plane of the abandoned field. They should stand still, as it is probably better to avoid the risk of stumbling and breaking their toes.

  

Movement II

Her thirst for coffee was immense and the impulse was to keep on moving in search of the nearest café. Her partner offered a detox tea instead, but she argued that nothing compares to the flavor of good coffee. They nodded condescendingly; knowing already the rush of adrenaline she gets by the smell of freshly grounded fair-trade coffee beans.

  

Movement III

A teenager walked up to him asking if he had a phone charger. He pulled one out of his lapis lazuli case, hidden underneath his oversized gender-neutral hoodie. Primal instinct would neurotically force him to carry one around, always, always, always, as part of the survival kit. He offered the charger with the urgency a real smoker would demonstrate when asked to roll a cigarette for a social smoker outside a crowded bar in the midst of winter. The teenager returned after the windstorm to give it back.


  

Movement IV

They somehow found themselves on the verge of the paved path at the outskirts of the suburb. Just before the main avenue, the mesmerizing glow of the gas station at dusk flickering behind the orange grove and the unruly rustling of leaves in the breeze, created the perfect scenery for the perennial last cigarette.

  

Movement V

The streets were empty, all the workers were gone and the vaporwave classic “Climbing the Corporate Ladder” was blasting from their waterproof 20W Bluetooth speaker, thrusting blood in their amygdala. “The years of this economic miracle will always be remembered by the smell in my nostrils of this truly blessed landscape” she mumbled as they slowly drifted away.

  

  

  

In his paintings, Konstantinos Giotis creates a conceptual network of cultural references, symbols and autobiographical deviations that blur the boundaries between the personal and the collective acting as building blocks for a contemporary imaginary. Through dreamy scenes and an elliptical relationship with representation, his painting often draws conceptually from the representational vision of the avant-garde of the 20th century. Thus, an analytical and emotional space arises that explores a rhizomatic field of thought through the deployment of iconographic language and painting practice. Often, repeated motifs act as starting points to explore ideological constructions, the limits of representation and painting tropes. The work presented features figures in a suggestive landscape, developed with a sarcastic mood of reflective disposition on painting processes and concepts of productivity.

  

Eva Papamargariti’s practice focuses on time-based media, printed material and sculptural installations that explore the relationship between digital space and material reality. She is interested in the creation of 2d/3d rendered spaces and scenarios which provoke narrations based on the obscure simultaneous situations unfolding in a quotidian frequency on the verge of digital and physical environments, blurring the boundaries between these «ecosystems». Her work delves into issues and themes related to simultaneity, merging and dissolving of our surroundings within the virtual, constant diffusion of fabricated synthetic images that define and fragment our identity and everyday experience, as well as the symbiotic procedures and entanglements that take place between humans, nature and technology. Furthermore, processes that are established through online presence, the traces that our operations inscribe onto the objects and habitat where we find ourselves, through our continuous interaction with devices and mechanic artifacts.

  

Konstantinos Pettas in his practice explores the structures of existence and production within the context of an economy in constant flux. For Untitled (Dasein I), the starting point is a commercially available piece of artificial granite rock, cast in aluminium, with industrial prints that mimic natural camouflage added on its surface attempting a geological imitation. A parallel between the formation of the natural world through geomorphological processes and the development of a new world that takes place incessantly through industrial processes. By reinterpreting the formation of an ecosystem, new ways of adapting and surviving in the context of the current socio-political reality emerge.

  

In his practice, Marios Stamatis examines the human–nature–technology triptych relationship as well as the technological limitations of embodiment and the value of emotion in a digital capitalist society. In this installation he composes a meta-narrative during which the organic matter has undergone evolutionary mutation processes. Through a de-centered physical and neural fluidity in the form of expression, his work simulates and explores the increasing influence of new forms of intelligence on the human psyche, intellect and ultimately the body, and how by embracing the interconnections between organic and non-organic life, affect becomes a vehicle for rethinking these transformative co-existences.

  

Valinia Svoronou presents a series of new ceramic works and older sculptures Salvaged Notes 4-8, 2021 and The Whirling Dress 1-2, 2020. The newly fired ceramics resemble notes and sketches, some salvaged and some encased within a strange glaze. The content of the notes range from already existing poetry to personal notes and sketches tributing other female artists, resembling diaristic fragments/confessions. The fragrance of those fictitious memoirs echoes back to her sculptures resembling roses made out of cardboard and plaster as a flower associated with secrecy. In a rare occurrence the malleable form of a plastic bag, fluttering around and slowly reconfigured by the wind is experienced in a state of pause. Somewhere amongst the movements of our contemporary world, the static of life quiets, all paces slow down and the mundane become obvious.