Exhibition time: 27 11 2018 - 29 12 2018

Venue: VAA Telšiai Gallery (Kęstučio g. 3, 87121 Telšiai)

Laura Zaveckaitė (LT / USA). IN BETWEEN

 

On 27th of November at 5pm IN Vilnius Academy of Arts Telšiai Gallery will be opening of exhibiton "In Between" by Laura Zaveckaitė. Exhibiton is part of international contemporary art festival "Kaunas in Art".

Lifted into a procession that traverses the largest wall of the sla307 art gallery, the ceramic sculptures of Laura Zaveckaite form a pattern that culls its conceptual complexity from various sources. The sculptures are modeled after an antique crucifix once owned by her grandmother that the artist acquired during a visit to her native Lithuania. The body of christ seemed to fly or writhe in place since the crucifix it had been pinned to rotted away long ago. Using white porcelain, Zaveckaite began to cast the figure of Jesus in a multitudinous fashion and since 2010 has shown her reproductions of the sculpture. The original sculpture is a relic of her familiar past which has now become a replica and subsequently, that replica has become an original that stands in relation to succeeding iterations of itself. This play with reproduction is the launching pad for the Installation’s refreshing combination of spirituality and minimalist logic manifested through seriality that reveals a philosophical contention with the contemporary heuristics of Christian Iconography.

A a row of individual “Jesus” sculptures. As one walks along the wall, the slight imperfections of each sculpture creates a stream of rhythmic variation in form. By casting and recasting the original sculpture by hand, the artist employs a method of production that moves forward in time, extending the principle of mechanically reproduced objects, placing emphasis on the enumeration of single units rather than on their individual development, perfection and authenticity.

Thus, on the outset, the serial configuration of Zaveckaite’s installation is declared louder than the subtle humanizing affects of each sculpture’s finer details as well as its religious source, creating a schism between two formal traditions: minimalism as a science of experience and the religiously transcendent.

Zaveckaite’s serial representational style owes to minimalism its most fundamental intellectual sources: the idea of a holistic presence or gestalt of a physical object in space that pushes the viewer into a genderless, individuated stance, allowing for direct phenomenal responses to dictate the experience of the object and its space - time. This minimalist inheritance creates a space for doxastic complications to invade the meditative mental spaces created by the installations white on white, lineally and serially composed configuration, thus allowing for the artist’s imagery... to reflect its contemporary environment.

Zaveckaite’s installation, in a simplified form, utilizes the logic behind philosopher James Trafford’s concept of the ‘suspension of the world’ by using it’s own formal language, namely seriality, to complicate the intuitions held by viewers when confronted by the crucifix. In other words, the two disparate elements of logic and intuition coalesce, in a soft collision that reframes the manifest image of christ so that new interpretations can arise through the viewing principles dictated by minimalism and seriality but at the same time pushed forward by the deeper prospect of a religious, if not spiritual, realization, albeit a vague and slightly biased one founded in contemporary notions of Christianity.

When is Christ representing the mythos and morality of Christianity and not the neocolonialist traditions of Western culture or the commercialization of religious faith and piety? How does the viewer reconcile the disparate readings of a liberated, ethereal Christ with one being laboriously and imperfectly mass produced? Ultimately, Zaveckaite’s representation of Christ turns into a reframing of the entire myth of Christianity only to finally state that by doing so through a somewhat mechanical process of production and in a logical visual syntax, the contemporary Christ designates itself as an item of kitsch whose deeper, spiritual meanings are contested with in the minds of the viewers. The aesthetics of the project then becomes, paradoxically, relational, bringing forth the intimate spaces of contemplation out for all to bare and equally share.

 

Compiled using text “The Poetry and Logic of Laura Zaveckaite’s Christ(s)“ by Joshua Poveda.

 

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