Through Silver Grove I Went Without Breaking A Twig
an exhibition by Inguna Gremzde
December 5th – 27th, 2019
Gremzde’s work take a look at human and nature relationship issues regarding nature as a focus for the formation of individual and community’s identity. Growing alienation from nature, habitation in cities and dominating consumer lifestyle results in more time spent in constructed, artificial spaces monitored by surveillance cameras like shopping malls and waiting halls defined as non-places, which being real measure of our time have no identity, relations and history. The scene of nature paid close look at as opposite can open itself to reveal a secret life, a narrativity and history outside the given field of perception.
Miniature landscape paintings placed in standardized plastic bottle caps are a small world on it’s own without national restrictions depicting sky, fields and woods, surrounded by contemporary frame. Even not showing any trace of human presence the scenes compare contemporary consumer lifestyles with man’s historically romantic relationship with nature. These small landscapes could have been intended for looking at when seized by a vague feeling of necessity to escape from undefined urban environment. Conceptually miniature scale could be regarded as a reference to the shrinking space of unaltered nature. The work in the same time investigates the common trend of landscape being regarded as unclean and unsafe unless neatly packaged, managed, labeled and turned into commodity. Important aspect of the project was to upcycle discarded caps, attempting to reduce the amount of single-use plastic waste in the world in some way.
The other part of project consists of paintings of one figure, seeming the same person, dressed black-and-white wandering in plastic world or non-place, casting no shadow, each movement being monitored by surveillance cameras. Alone, but one of many, user of non-place is in contractual relations with it, a form of reminder being empty trolley he trundles round the supermarket. These round shaped images reminding of spy hole exploring the patterns of collective behavior and carrying a sense of dystopia masked by artificial supermarket environment are both intimate miniatures and mass-produced portraits of single figure on non-narrative shopping trip. A walk through aisles with choices to make and decisions to take also serves as a metaphor of the life itself, for the thoughts and feelings of the human condition. The image painted on the reverse side of transparent plastic lid locks the inhabitant of the scene behind the plastic screen as opposite the directness of colourful landscapes.
For more information about the artist, please visit their website: www.axisweb.org/p/ingunagremzde/