Saturday, September 13, 2014

Trickster / The variable practice

A Whales Architects, The Turk, 2014
The expanded term “trickster”, as a deity that, in shamanistic mythologies, bears the characteristics of an anthropomorphic animal but also the qualities of a mythological hero who breaks the laws while being in fact a seducer. The game between two related definitions – the one who works miracles and the trickster – can be useful for appreciating a direction of today’s visual production. If we consult the ancient Greek definition of “metis”, which means cunningness and skill, we see that doing the trick was coming along with both the materialization of a technical invention or immediate necessity, and the styles of the artistic practice.
The problem arisen unexpectedly, the apparent impasse not predicted in the original design, lurks as contingency in the practices of the artists examined here, as well as in our lives. But through the multiple and variable wavering of Metis, it turns into a beneficial accident, something not only manageable but almost desired. The point of friction operates as a signal for the change of course and tactics. It did and does indicate the internal dynamics of situations, goes back to Odysseus and his “many devices”, is opportunistic in the strategic meaning of the term, outside its moralistic and negative meaning, and joins up with “cunning intelligence”: the kind of noesis that Plato overthrew for the purpose of establishing the idealistic thinking.The vision of the curator of this exhibition is to assemble works of contemporary artists who, by their tactics, bring forth the reading of the world as a permanent global variation, where apparently insignificant details of daily practice find their meaning in the evolution of things, and the conjunctures are no longer problematic imponderable factors but the field of genesis of new dynamics.

Valentina Karga, "Summer school for Applied Autonomy" , 2014

In those works and tactics, a kind of intelligence still survives, which does not paralyze in front of the unpredictable (the conjunctions), which is able to cope with perplexities in front of the distance that separates an ideal project from the effort of its implementation.
Participating artists: A Whales Architects, Arvanitis Nikos, Kamaris Stephanos, Karga Valentina, Kessanlis Nikos, Kotionis Zissis, Kotsoni Eleni, Ntelakos Apostolos, Pantazopoulou Ioanna, Sachini Nana, Sachpazis Costas, Sagri Georgia, Sepetzoglou Nikos, Touloudis Petros.
Curators: Alexandros Psychoulis, Kostis Velonis
theoretical back-up: Phoebe Giannisi gallery, Athens : 29.9 – 22.11.2014