Traces of moments
Dreaming the continuity
September 10 > 30, 2020
Private Opening : September 10,2020 from 19:00 to 21:00
Rruga Abdi Toptani (at Toptani Center Ground Floor), Tirana
Following its first open call for young artists launched in March 2020, Gallery70 has the pleasure to present the group exhibition OAS2020 curated by Edison Çeraj under the theme “Traces of moments – Dreaming the continuity”
“The butterfly does not count the months,
but the moments,
therefore she gets enough time ”
The first question that usually arises for a group exhibition is what brings the authors together? Or what connects the artworks to each other?
We are dealing with a normal question where, in addition to seeing and observing the works separately, one by one, we search a common message which brought them together and which they intend to convey.
More or less, starting from the middle of the XX-th century, this is how group exhibitions work. Certain authors compete or are invited to reflect and address a certain topic.
Looking at the six young artists of this exhibition, Resina Meçani, Medina Çelepija, Vanesa Kraja, Eljesa Dizdari, Edinjo Jahja and Artiola Gryka, I notice three common elements:
First, their works seem like fragments detached from a wholeness that we don’t know or have forgotten, despite the fact that we can imagine it. This stands out more in the painting of Edinjo Jahja, Medina Çelepija and in the photograph of Eljesa Dizdari. They detach from the wholeness or from a kind of flow that bit to which they identify most, or that part which most convincingly represents simultaneously the wholeness and their character, or merely a condition or an indefinite impression.
From time to time we need to intervene by stopping the movement or the progress of something, to capture a moment which serves to the knowledge of the world around us and (as a result) our role in it.
One of the most typical phenomena of our time is the quickness, treated also by Calvino in “American Lessons”. Thus, living under constant pressure to get things done as quickly as possible, things come fading (like the landscape or buildings seen from the car), until they mysteriously disappear, leaving behind an unbearable gap. But, nevertheless, some traces remain, which can be preserved through art; because art is a continual return to the things that we have lost; a memory that liberates us (even for a few moments) from the fog of the illusions of the present and the future.
Therefore, in the works of this exhibition, more unconsciously than consciously, the authors have preserved these traces. Accordingly, some of the works look like shadows, projected from an “ideal” world, which we cannot grasp through the senses, but through the imagination.
Secondly, they have something from the world of photography, because the time inside the artworks seems surrendering to the kingdom of pause. Because of that, the first element has an organic connection to the second.
The photography as such marks a detachment of the object/subject from the mechanisms of time. Time in photography has an intense load with timelessness, because the subject that is fixed in it always remains in the same state, detached not only from time, but above all from the movement/flow of life. Such images are like a pendulum that no longer moves.
The market painted by Resina Meçani is involved in this atmosphere: numb, empty although not emptied, because there is everything in it: the stalls are full, but there is no one to sell or to buy. There is something which reminds us the paintings of Hopper: his spaces suffering for life and the characters in crossroads, standing without purpose, or waiting out of time.
While the third element that we can trace in these works is the dreaming, which appears mostly in the self-portrait of Artiola Gryka and in the video of Vanesa Kraja. In Vanessa’s video we can talk about the merging of two times: the past and the present, as a melody that she is the only one to hear, despite the noises through which the present surrounds it.
To dream means to remember, just as to remember means to be gripped by the fevers of dreaming. This happens regardless of us, like the rain, or like the dreams themselves, that come and go giving us signals that our efforts are not wasted.”