Solo exhibition closing my residency in Prám Studios, Prague, curated by Šárka Koudelová. I was working with the concept of romantic love with its cultural clichés and its emotional and social repercussions.
I used visual samples from anime as the genre which is based on appropriation itself. I’m interested how female characters are depicted in anime: very often acting hysterically and overreacting. Working with these anime representations is for me a way to talk about gender roles, commodification of body in media and the problem of intimacy in post-digital world.
On the biggest and most eye-catching painting opening the exhibition, scaled up anime faces, the lovesick and envious one, are juxtaposed with a quotation from Elfriede Jelinek’s novel, Women as lovers: ...it is so good with you Heinz, that one would like to die! And further: Briggite's vagina snaps greedily at the young entrepreneur. This heart-breaking book presents the precarious, submissive position of women in patriarchal society. Their manipulative attempts to capture a resourceful husband are aimed at regaining control and climbing the social ladder.
This painting has been painted on a rose-patterned textile, same as almost all paintings on the exhibition. They were combined as well with a site-specific installation of heart-shaped padlocks casted in resin and textile braids with some flower and blowers sticked in them, mounted on a barrier and here and there in a gallery space.
In the exhibition, aesthetics of everyday life merges with pathos of romantic clichés. The empty armor on the next painting has been painted on the rose-patterned textile, although its metal plate has been perforated by mundane plants, such as ears of wheat and some weed. It has been completed by some cloth braids with daisies. This painting was inspired by the novel Non-existent knight by Italo Calvino.
Consecutively, ironing boards were used as canvas to paint some fantastic, elven swords. It is a continuation of my series of swords depicted on ironing boards, On the sword and on the distaff side, in which the military-focused historical narratives and legends about great deeds are opposed to unpaid invisible everyday work, performed by female figures.
Next painting, We will remember, was painted on a t-shirt with a print of a soldier holding his gun and a writing on a sunset background, found in a second-hand. It is half-covered with a semi-transparent layer of anime girl face.
This residency and the final exhibition is supported by Visegrad Fund within the Visual and Sound Art AIR.
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