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P74 Gallery

Valerija Intihar: Low res images / Nežka Zamar: Sequence of Spaces

10 February – 3 March 2022
P74 Gallery

Valerija Intihar: Low res images

The starting point of Valerija Intihar’s creative practice is photography which she uses primarily as a tool for exploring materiality, perception, and comprehension of matter. At the same time, she inventively uses the nature of the selected media and their characteristics which she partly converts. In this way, she highlights the questionability of what is seen and present and the instability of perception and the world around her. Already in her master’s project in the making (Zero)gravities (2021 – mentor Prof. Peter Rauch), she dealt with gravity and weight and documented home-made experiments in which she used constructed objects and their traces in order to visualize the tension that is present but invisible to the eye. The discrepancy between depiction and reality is her point of interest in her new project Low-res images (2022) as well.

The title of the exhibition indicates the unclarity, the illegibility of the motif in question where the motif is no longer really recognizable. The author assembles objects made of various waste materials, paper, cardboard, textiles, observes them, and acts according to their capacities and limitations. She places each object in a selected space where she photographs it. Constructed objects, sculptures, act as an allusion to recognizable objects, but their identification is hampered by the fact that their image is blurred. The medium of photography flattens the materiality of the sculptural installation to the two-dimensionality of paper, while the black-and-white colour spectrum further deprives of potential characteristics that would facilitate recognition of individual objects and materials. The viewer is thus torn between anticipation, the desire for identification which is taken away from him or her. Nevertheless, these objects reveal material simplicity and incompleteness. Valerija Intihar understands them as ephemeral structures of specific modular units where the emphasis is on transience – they are only intended to be documented in photography. From the side role they play in our lives, she places them at the centre and thus makes them visible. The properties of the materials used dictate what kind of structure will be formed; they must be taken into account if we want this structure to stand or withstand gravity. If the photographs do not deprive the objects of their materiality, the artist, via a non-classical representation, leads the viewer to look at them and experience them differently. She moves away from the wall and places the photographs on constructed bases that serve as pedestals in the space. We look at them from above, we move around them, which allows us to observe changes in the perception of space, the gravity within it, and the tensions that occur in the staged frame. Unusual objects within everyday space act as intruders, a kind of fictitious objects that undermine the foundations of the reality into which they are brought.

The field of the author’s interest is determined by the relation environment-object-photography. The project is based on documenting temporary structures that we believe have happened as they are based on the (still attributed) authenticity of the photograph. Valerija Intihar reveals that the event is hidden in the mass of material. Just as we can recognize a specific aesthetics in the accumulated material, the author wonders if this excess of material can be changed into meaning. Accumulation is like a kind of enumeration, a repetition of the essence, where the quantity of repetitions of the same can be understood as a statement. Material saturation is easily linked in a broader sense to the problem of consumption in modern society, and on the other hand to the extremely transient nature of objects, to the problem of storage in the world of art.

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Valerija Intihar (1995) graduated from the Faculty of Natural Sciences and Engineering, at the Department of Textile and Fashion Design, and works as an independent fashion designer in Ljubljana. Since 2017, she has been representing half of the Fuga project which has collaborated with platforms such as the Centre for Creativity, the Museum of Architecture and Design, the Mercedes-Benz Fashion Award, and Ljubljana Fashion Week. Some of her light installations have been shown both at the group or individual exhibitions at the Lighting Guerrilla Festival (2015, 2016, 2017, 2021). She is currently continuing her studies at the Academy of Fine Arts and Design, at the Department of Photography. She explores the positions of objects in the contemporary material-saturated world in both analogue and digital techniques – mainly through process documentation, sculptural installations, and manipulations in darkroom procedures.

 


 

Nežka Zamar: Sequence of Spaces


Photo: Giacomo De Donà

Nežka Zamar’s creative process begins with research – observation, documentation, and reinterpretation are then deepened through her work with different media. She understands herself as a translator of the stories that surround us, so she delves deeply into the subject. This allows her to understand it in new contexts and find new connections. She mostly creates with found objects. Borders are a constant in her artistic practice. She analyses them with a focus on their potential shifts. She is interested in the interspaces that arise between physical materiality and the conceptualization of an idea. At the exhibition in the P74 Gallery, the artist presents the continuation of the project she started last year at her residence in the Dolomiti Contemporanee (Italy).

In the project Sequence of Spaces II, Nežka Zamar intertwines visual art with literature or language and linguistics. The work can be linked to the tradition of visual and concrete poetry where the boundaries of the verbal are upgraded in the visual, but the author also deals with the question of what a book can be. The project is materialized in a spatial installation, made especially for the gallery space; it is a site-specific work. It contains several sheets of paper that act as a wall, and text is engraved on them. Each sheet (including the text) acts as an individual and independent piece, and at the same time, due to the layout, the installation can be read in several directions; horizontally and vertically, with arbitrary cuts and finishes. The viewer moves inside the illuminated installation; between the walls, which not only allows for different views on the visuality of the work but highlights an open form of reading. The latter does not have a predetermined content and interpretation; also, various languages ​​and linguistic laws are used. The artist plays with the ambiguity of the perception of materiality as the paper she uses is not made of cellulose but of stone. She thus builds a contrast between the firmness of the base material from which the artwork is made, the construction of a wall that acts as something stable, and the lightness, flexibility, and sensitivity of paper. The text record itself does not cut the surface of the paper but rather interferes with the material and creates creases. The element of the wall as something that delimits space emphasizes the concept of division, the relationships that are established through it.

Along with the spatial installation, there are three more pieces from the series Directions (An Attempt at Transparency) (2022), in which the author focuses on the boundaries of painting and literature by highlighting their basic elements. She intertwines traditional techniques with new technologies, both in concept and materiality. Transcription of found digital records and text messages becomes the basis for works on paper which are placed in illuminated frames made with 3D printing technique. Because the paper is creased, the layout and lighting change the readability of the characters/letters while the changing content in the frame indicates the distance between the author and the found subjects.

In these projects, Nežka Zamar researches the perception of text within the visual, and above all, she emphasizes the complexity of language, as well as practices of reading and reading the meaning. She skilfully uses the element of physical delimitation within works of art to open up questions about the multifaceted nature of meaning, while with the light she achieves the impression of the intangibility of what is written.

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Nežka Zamar (1990) is a visual artist born along the Slovenian – Italian border. She graduated in painting from the Academy of Fine Arts in Venice (2013), continued her studies at Mimar Sinan Fine Arts University in Istanbul (2015), and completed her master’s degree in Venice (2018). She continues to collaborate with Atelier F, the Venetian Academy’s art studio and is an active member and one of the founders of the Fondazione Malutta art collective. Since 2021, she has been exhibiting regularly, individually and in groups, and at the same time has been organizing projects and workshops in the international art space. She lives and works between Ljubljana and Venice. Her major exhibitions include La Torre Maluttona e Il Mercato Babelico, Monitor Gallery, Rome, Italy, Il Gemello Cativo, Museo Santa Maria della Scala, Siena, Italy (2018), Collezione Malutta and Black Market, Monitor Gallery, Rome, spatial installation and presentation of the book as part of the Mediterranea 17 Young Artists Biennale, Tirana (2017), and Fondazione Malutta meets the Albanian Pavilion – a collaboration with the Albanian Pavilion at the Venice Biennale of Architecture (2016).