Time Regained

artAmari: Time Regained
21st November-19th December 2015

Fokianou 24 (7th Floor)
116 35 Athens

artAmari Residency presents Time Regained, an exhibition of the 8 international, visual artists that has hosted between May 2013 and October 2015 in the area of Amari, in Rethymno, Crete.

The aim of artAmari is for the artists to get to know the nature, the traditions and customs of Amari region, its history and architecture, the everyday life as well as for the locals to acquaint with different cultures and familirise with contemporary art practices and ideas.

The residency provides the chance to enter a rhythm and time completely other than their usual so that they re-evaluate their work and set new directions, by experiencing a unique place –and according to them- a Heaven on Earth. The exhibition itself is an opportunity to think back at these three years, in search of fresh inspiration and new partnerships.

The artists are:Blanka Amezkua (Mexico), Gonzalo Paramo (Spain), Jennie Booth (U.S.A.), Ana Lucia Mariz (Brazil), Lorenzo Bruschini (Italy), El Ka (France/Belgium), Paz de la Calzada (Spain/U.S.A.) και Ivana Ivkovic (Serbia).

artAmari: Time Regained

In the three years of its course in the area of Amari, artist Residency artAmari, in the hands of Angeliki Douveri, who has conceived and runs it, it has provided the opportunity for reflection and dialogue on diverse contemporary works of different media, through the creativity of international artists and the workshops they realise, bringing Crete closer to the rest of the world and vice versa.
I hope that her efforts towards her vision will always find the response they deserve! Personally, I would like to thank her warmly for her collaboration and the opportunity to share my thoughts on the works of artAmari collection.

In her Blue line/found architectural corners collage, Blanka Amezkua creates and deconstructs the space, organizing it round the architectural reference of the guest house she stayed in during her stay at Amari. The voids and shapes created by the intersections of the strips that she has used, operate autonomously, self-referentially and combined together provide the project its own existence, both visual and metaphorical, reflecting the mood of the artist and the situation of that environment. The work is abstract with its painterly surfaces breaking down into design and matter, emphasizing order, clarity and balance.

Gonzalo Paramo’s work entitled Olive Press, created by embossing the paper and painting with Indian ink, is inspired by an old traditional olive mill in the region. In the top view of this pressing mechanism come together the reflections of the artist on the landscape and the presence of the press as memory, born of matter and time. The gestural dimension of the work, the clarity and precision of its execution, are the bridge to the objective world and its cultural components. The artist explores the social reference of abstraction and systems that create and maintain the relationships between design and material. If the form is the idea, the medium is the result.

Jennie Booth in her watercolour and ink drawing entitled Deep, creates a personal universe where cosmology unites with neuroscience and physics in a peculiar ‘theory of everything’. The artist parallels the energy of dark matter (which in her work “condenses” in the form of a black figure) with that of the mind, but also with the power of female nature. The natural world, dark matter and the human brain are three interconnected vessels that play with the concept of probability and randomness, exchanging roles and giving each of us our own separate entity and identification of the Self.

Ana Lucia Mariz’s embroidery on linen titled The opposite of beginnings, refers to real and symbolic places where history, archeology, memory and time intersect. Pottery of Minoan settlements are objects to be copied and reproduced and in the final work to provoke new interpretations as symbols of social and economic developments of a great ancient civilization through today’s standards. The complex associations that unite past, present and future, are transported by the movement of the needle and written by the thread on the fabric, which itself bears all the characteristics of its own history within the human culture.

The drawing Zo-graphos by Lorenzo Bruschini is part of the artist’s search for the primordial animal symbols of Crete, complex rituals and mysteries associated with life, in the sense of “indestructible life” and death, as explained in detail in Karl Kérény’s book Dyonisos. Drawing inspiration from the farm with different animals found at the hostel and using a spontaneous and expressionist style, Bruschini makes references to imaginary worlds, not fully accessible, like the mythological world and ancient, pagan religions, in which the great human verities maintain encoded.

The photograph of artistic duet El Ka (Elodie Laurent and Stéphane Kiszak) entitled Flying Sculpture in Amari is a metaphysical exploration of the possibility of authentic experience within the capabilities of the medium of photography itself. Their flying sculptures, assembled from objects that they find lying around on the ground, entail the element of transformation, by going beyond their materiality and the nature of their usage during those seconds in the air. The landscape of Psiloritis mountain constitutes the background in which beehive frames and olive harvesting nets, are collected, preserved and perpetuated, demonstrating the power of photography as a way to look both with the eyes and consciousness.

In her triptych The Classical Labyrinth at ArtAmari (pencil on paper), Paz de la Calzada records stages of a perpetual ritual process: a gradual weeding of the field to create -or maybe reveal- the formation of the Minoan design labyrinth with seven concentric circles. In this labyrinth where there is a center, and it is possible to go back to the start, the visitor isn’t lost: the dialogue between the drawings promotes the effort to achieve a more open and full consciousness of the world and a way of meditation in order to reveal hidden worlds and supernatural mysteries.

The in-situ installation by Ivana Ivkovic at the external walls of the historic Monastery of Arkadi titled Fire contains 11 handmade blankets referring to the flames that wrapped up the powder magazine of the monastery in 1866 in defense of the Cretans against the Turkish occupation. Their positioning reflects the explosion and the silence, the destruction and contemplation, the historical memory which remains intertwined with the moral and emotional experience and makes us face the established ways of perceiving and interpreting it anew, each time we experience it through a dynamic, refreshing intervention of art.

Vassiliki Vayenou
Art Historian

We would like to thank Mystic Pizza & Pasta for providing excellent food for our closing event:

© 2013-2023 artAmari Residency All Rights Reserved