Dizi, Μαρίκα Κωνσταντινίδου, Mora, Nique, Reis, Simoni
Inside Boxes - Beyond Borders :
Gender Identity Investigation by Greek Female Artists Working in the Urban Public Space
Inside Boxes-Beyond Borders is a group exhibition realized within the framework of the conference Knowledge in a Box: HowMundaneThingsShapeKnowledgeProduction and presents the works of Greek female artists whose artistic activity has been practiced in the streets taking the form of graffiti, street art and/or experimental performance. Their works, objects and paintings, were created in view of the conference and were inspired by the shape of the box elevated to a conceptual level as the various forms of the containers explore gender identity issues.
Dizi presents the “Chocolate Box.” The delicacies within it are made out of modelling clay and razors. This particular content is associated with feminine obsessions ‒ the longing for beauty, the desire for love and the emotions of self-hatred.
Marika Konstantinidou paints the work “Triple Samurai”. She depicts a form of grid, inspired by Sudoku, the number placement puzzle based on logical/rational thinking. Thereby she playfully questions issues pertaining to the logical/rational tenets implied by various twentieth-century versions of neo-Kantian formalist theory. The gridded pattern, a feature linked with historical and late avant-garde, has often been identified with “aesthetic autonomy” and relies on criteria of classification and evaluation; therefore, it operates as a device of exclusion and discriminatory abuse not only in theory but also in practice. Her second piece, entitled “Rainbow,” is a plastic drawing tube whose dark interior alludes to the conceptualization of the artistic procedure; the latter remains archetypically clandestine and hints to the artist’s inability to reveal beauty in general as an extraordinary ideal.
Μora participates with a painting entitled “Μy Perfect Me.” She deconstructs a female face in a way that resembles the pixels of a digital picture. Except for the eyes, the remaining features are partly erased as if the outcome of a pixel enlargement. Do we erase spots we don’t like? The beholder wonders whether the ideal of beauty, pursued even with means such as surgery, influences attitudes, behaviour and the perceptions of the self.
Νique presents a “paper toy,” an object composed by small carton boxes vaguely rendering a standing female figure. The eye sketched on the box, which is mounted in place of the head, bears the initials esc, a clear reference to the Esc key on computer keyboards and a carrier of rather eloquent connotations. Besides, the figure’s simplified rendition offers a different point of view with respect to the representation of gender identity, which is based on unconscious and conscious stereotypes originating from the patriarchal culture.
Reis constructs a wooden box entitled “Not an empty box.” She explores the gradual societal change which transformed something as sacred as the female genitalia ‒a carrier of life and procreation‒ to a kind of box, or else to something void and lifeless. Besides, “box” is a slang word for vagina in American parlance. The main thought behind her work is the investigation of sexual politics, namely the role that patriarchy plays in sexual relations. Therefore, in an attempt to remind to her viewers the importance of female genitalia, she affixes a vagina model on top of the box. The box is not empty. The viewers may search its content through the vagina with their hands, only to find out that the model represents a pregnant woman, carrying an embryo.
Simoni presents “The Secret Garden”, a wooden box marked on the exterior with her graffiti representational logo, whereas its interior is filled with sand. The delicate, girly face on the external surface reveals a renewed interest on the subject of beauty and goes beyond traditional notions: it connects beauty with a new genre of humanism and moral value. The construction’s interior with its load of sand may actually allude to the secure, enclosed garden (hortus conclusus). Alternatively, the sand itself may be construed as a suggestion to the transient female identity, which is perpetually in a constant flux.
Η ομαδική έκθεση Μέσα στο κουτί-έξω από τα όρια: Η διερεύνηση του κοινωνικού φύλου από Ελληνίδες καλλιτέχνιδες που δρουν στον δημόσιο αστικό χώρο, πραγματοποιείται στο πλαίσιο του συνεδρίου Knowledge in a Box: How Mundane Things Shape Knowledge Production και παρουσιάζει τη δουλειά Ελληνίδων καλλιτεχνών που δρουν στον δημόσιο αστικό χώρο. Tα έργα τους, κατασκευές και ζωγραφικοί πίνακες, έγιναν με αφορμή το συνέδριο και έχουν ως αφετηρία το κουτί στην εννοιολογική του διάσταση, καθώς αυτό επενδύεται με την προβληματική της έμφυλης ταυτότητας. Οι καλλιτέχνιδες που παίρνουν μέρος είναι οι εξής: η Dizi με την κατασκευή «Chocolate Box»· η Μαρίκα Κωνσταντινίδου με τον πίνακα «Triple Samurai» και το αντικείμενο με τίτλο «Rainbow»· η Μora με τον πίνακα «Μy Perfect Me»· η Νique με ένα «paper toy», μια κατασκευή που συνδέεται με την κουλτούρα του graffiti· η Reis με την κατασκευή «Not an empty box»· η Simoni με την κατασκευή «Τhe Secret Garden».
Exhibition Curating and Organisation: Stigma Lab
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