Eva Petrič 21st Cent EVA – v njeni kož

2018-03-07 19:00

 

Eva Petrič se na aktualni razstavi 21st Cent EVA – v njeni koži predstavlja z izborom fotografij in videa, nastalih v zadnjih enajstih letih, od katerih je večina del razstavljenih prvič. Vsebinsko razstava odpira vprašanja ženske emancipacije. Slednja zadevajo žensko na dveh ravneh: na širši družbeni, kjer se manifestira kot dediščina boja za enakopravnost žensk, in na subjektivni, kjer zadevajo enakopravnost, uravnoteženost in svobodo, kolikor si jo izbori, izpogaja, vzame oz. dopusti vsaka ženska v odnosu z moškimi. Oba vidika zaznamujeta družbeni pogled na sodobno žensko, torej pogled od zunaj, ki se po eni strani gradi na kulturno-socioloških, psiholoških, filozofskih, ekonomskih raziskavah, po drugi strani pa na javno podobo ženske vplivajo stereotipi aktualnega modnega okusa in estetskih zahtev. Kako pa je v koži sodobne ženske? Kakšen je njen pogled, njeno občutenje položaja in vloge, ki ji jih začrtuje današnja družba? Umetnica se vprašanja loteva v luči osebne refleksije o emancipaciji kot posledici ujetosti ženske v družbene norme in pred-stave. V vsebini se kot osnovni ton zrcali bolečina, zapisana v matrico ženske narave in družbene vloge, ki jo igra ali jo je primorana igrati. Naslov razstave opozarja na svetopisemsko Evo, zasidrano v kulturno-religiozni optiki zahodnega sveta, za katero bi lahko rekli, da je imela vse, tudi svobodo in enakopraven položaj v odnosu do moškega, a je zaradi hotenja po več vse izgubila in bila za kazen podvržena moškemu ter obsojena na trpljenje. Po njej je bil pahnjen v trpljenje ves ženski rod, ki si že stoletja prizadeva dobiti nazaj tisto, kar je bilo prvi ženski odvzeto. Petričeva nam prikaže Evo 21. stoletja kot poosebitev sodobne ženske, ki se še vedno ne more povsem osvoboditi utesnjujočih predstav in determinirajočih vlog, v katere jo potiska družba, kar navsezadnje meče temno senco na emancipacijo. Eva 21. stoletja je realna ženska, intelektualno in čustveno prebujena, in ne umetno skonstruiran tip, ki ji ga skušajo        vsiliti; proti slednjemu se bori in zavrača podobo lutke in pasivne figure, noče več igrati po moških pravilih, temveč biti ženska, kot je to zapisano v njeni naravi. In priznanje ženske kot enakopravne moškemu v njeni drugačnosti od moškega je bistvo emancipacije, sicer cilj le-te ni dosežen. Petričeva se loteva teme, ki presega časovni okvir in v univerzalni sporočilnosti povezuje ženske ne le sodobnega časa, ampak katerekoli dobe. 

V razstavo nas uvede pretresljiva podoba ženskega krika na barvni fotografiji Krona trnjev. Krik, ki se izvije iz široko razprtih ženskih ust, postavljenih za različne ekrane, kot so vzorčasta steklena vrata, zamrznjena šipa, vodna gladina ali v pričujočem primeru s kapljami prekrita površina, je eden prepoznavnih motivov v opusu Petričeve. Primarni izraz ženske bolečine, ki ga v zgodovini umetnosti čustveno najintenzivneje interpretirajo dramatični prizori baročnega slikarstva in kiparstva, kot je npr. jok obupanih mater ob pokolu nedolžnih otročičev (Guido Reni) ali nemočen beg nimfe Dafne pred strasti vdanim Apolonom (Gianlorenzo Bernini), se na delu Petričeve razbira kot ujetost. V ženski figuri, ki v presunljivem sunku telesa diagonalno zareže v kompozicijo, kot da bi jo fotografska kamera ujela sredi paničnega bega, občutimo bolečino, ki stopa v gledalčev prostor in določa osnovni ton razstave. Bolečina je dodatno naglašena s paličicami, zabodenimi v v usta in zatilje, kar aludira na trnovo krono. Kot mučena, preganjana žival, obsojena na bolečino, če spregovori, a še večjo, če molči, oropana svojega pravega obraza, ki ga zakriva maska, je prispodoba trpljenja, ki ga ženska, ujetnica lažnih predstav in pričakovanj, ki ji jih nalaga zunanji svet, skriva pred slednjim. Nikakršnega izhoda, optimizma ni zaznati, ravno nasprotno, kaplje na površini še dodatno prispevajo k vtisu, da se figura, hlastajoč za zrakom, utaplja in da jo bo temni val zagrnil, kar še stopnjuje tesnobni vtis brezizhodnosti.

Drugi razstavni sklop, za katerega je avtorica izbrala črno-bele fotografije in barvni video, obravnava motiv sence oz. odseva, značilnega za opus Petričeve. Senca je metafora za utišano oz. v tišino umaknjeno žensko. Evina
igra 
predstavlja motiv sodobne ženske, v genetskem zapisu katere odseva prva ženska, in tako kot ona igra sladko igro zapeljevanja, ki jo simbolizira jabolko. Križna postavitev simbolizira križ, ki ga nosi ženska, ko sledi zunanjim in lastnim imperativom o svojem poslanstvu in vlogi, se obremenjuje s svojo podobo ali pa z dejstvom, da mora biti emancipirana in prekositi moškega. Postavitev pa lahko beremo tudi na lahkotnejši način kot nedolžno igro ženske, ki vabi k radostim življenja brez predsodkov, kar je protiutež vsem stereotipom, ki jih pripisujemo biblijski Evi in posledično (sodobni) ženski. Pomen jabolka, ki je v estetiziranem barvnem posnetku vabljivo in je obenem snovni kontrast neoprijemljivemu svetu senc, se tako prevesi v pozitivno skušnjavo kot obet nečesa sladkega, je povabilo k življenju, ki sije v intenzivnih barvah. Resnobnejši ton zasledimo na drugih delih, pri katerih dobimo občutek, da je igra izgubljena. Sodobna Eva je, tako kot svetopisemska, izgnana iz tega, česar je bila prvotno deležna, in ne more popraviti, kar jo po izgnanstvu določa v zunanjem svetu. Prevečkrat je površno pojmovana na ravni objekta (poželenja) oz. trofeje, kar predstavlja Trofeada, senčna projekcija ženskega telesa v zapeljivi pozi na površini, polepljeni z napisi trophy, trofeja, ki učinkuje kot projekcija moških želja oz. družbenih stereotipov. Lahko je potisnjena v kot, kar je zajeto na fotografijah iz cikla Freska Potepuški pes in V kot, iz kota, na katerih je vsebina stopnjevana s kotno postavitvijo. Na prvi fotografiji se ponovno srečamo z dramatičnim krikom, na drugi pa odločno izproženi kazalec kot michelangelovski citat vnaša upanje, da bo obudil v senco potopljen resigniran ženski lik. Nazobčan vzorec, ki spominja na trnje, deli povezuje s Krono
trnjev
. Petričeva v videu Ena
velikost
za vse na primeru kipa grške boginje lepote, na katerega projicira lastno senco v groteskno razpotegnjenih proporcih in zalomih telesa, odpira vprašanje vsiljenih, umetno skonstruiranih lepotnih idealov, ki v ženski vzbujajo občutek, da ni (dovolj) lepa. Če se ženske prilagodijo lepotnim idealom, lahko pride do paradoksa: za ceno lepote, ki sije iz njihove enkratne osebnosti in jim je bila dana kot dar, postanejo uniformirane, celo dolgočasne lutke, oddaljene od iskrivosti življenja. Senca
sence
, največje delo tega sklopa, ki s postavitvijo okrog vogala dinamično usmerja gledalčev pogled  k postopnemu sestavljanju celote, vsebinsko izstopa. Subtilna podoba ženske s krili, zatopljene v tihi avtorefleksiji, je podana v zrcalnem odsevu. Ta je kadriran tako, da osrednji del kompozicije zavzemajo krila, ki naglašajo osvobajanje in izhod iz utesnjenosti, hkrati pa simbolizirajo transformacijo ženske v eterično bitje; kot da se emancipacija polno uresniči šele v metafizični sferi bivanja. 

Barvni fotografski diptih Krona
palčk
, ki preigrava motiv ženske kot žrtve in upornice, predstavlja antipod Kroni
trnjev
: maska naposled pade, žrtev pokaže svoj spremenjeni obraz, povsem osredotočen, pripravljen na boj. 

Z deli iz serije Hematom stopamo v kalejdoskopsko barvit tretji razstavni sklop. Barvne fotografije v svetlobnih okvirih, katerih format je zapolnjen po principu horror
vacui,
so nastale s prekrivanjem barvnih fotografij ženske v pogledu od blizu ali v širšem prostor-skem izrezu in fotografij čipk in njihovih senc. Serija, poimenovana po podkožni krvavitvi, ki nastane zaradi pritiskov od zunaj, osvetljuje nevarnost zatajevanja pritiskov na žensko, zato je emancipacija zanjo vitalnega pomena. Čipkasta mreža, ki je sicer izvrsten izdelek umetne obrti, po katerem pogled drsi z užitkom, predstavlja ujetost ženske. Hkrati se bere kot prispodoba krhke lepote ženske narave, ki je, kot pravi umetnica, ujeta v svoji koži, iz katere ni zmožna uiti. Ujeta v mreže družbenih vzorcev, medsebojnih odnosov, lastnih čustev, misli, hrepenenj in trpljenja, se pojavlja v vlogi aktivnega subjekta (npr. v vlogi zapeljivke, mislečega subjekta), drugič pasivnega. V nekaj primerih je opazno navezovanje na modno fotografijo, vendar estetizirana podoba odseva bolečino, saj se nanjo lepi vrsta lažnih predstav, ki ji jih določa modna industrija. V seriji so izpostavljena npr. vprašanja zapeljevanja kot ženskega orožja, trpljenja v ljubezni z žensko z iztrganim srcem sredi o’keefovske pustinje, celoto pa zaokroža želja po osvoboditvi s ptico razprtih kril. 

Delo Eve Petrič zaznamuje izjemna izrazna moč, ki se poraja iz introspekcije in intuitivnega odkrivanja vsebin, ki umetnico skozi ustvarjalno nujo privedeta do osupljivih rezultatov. Svoje telo uporablja kot medij za ustvarjalno izpoved, pri čemer jo lahko uvrščamo med izrazno močne avtorice, kot sta npr. na področju fotografije Francesca Woodman in Cindy Sherman. Skozi svoje telo daje ženskam glas, želi, da so upoštevane, cenjene, razbremenjene nerealnih pričakovanj in zahtev ter sprejete takšne, kakršne so – v svoji koži. Ali če parafraziramo umetničino izjavo, Eva 21. stoletja presega imperative mode in javnega mnenja ter si upa živeti svoje življenje v lastnem ritmu srca in v zavedanju svoje dragocenosti.

 

mag. Andreja Rakovec

 

Eva Petrič, r.1983 v Sloveniji, ustvarja v Ljubljani, Slovenija, na Dunaju, Avstrija, in v New Yorku, ZDA, v fotografiji, videu, instalacijah, performansu in literaturi. 2005 je je diplomirala iz psihologije in vizualnih umetnosti na univerzi Webster na Dunaju, in  2010 magistrirala iz novih medijev na Transart Institute Berlin/Danube University Krems.

Lani je številnim priznanjem (nagrada Čižek za Naj-digič  2006, Ljubljana; izbor slov. um. kritikov febr. 2008; umetnica meseca Art Lab, Dunaj, junij 2008; štipendija švicarske fondacije Vordemberge-Gildewart leta 2010; KH Pfann Ohmann Preis, Dunaj 2011; K3 International short film festival Ljubljana 2012; finalist ID-Consoni public intervention Sondika 2012, Španija; izbor BIAB bienale 2012 in 2015, Peking; 2013 Hongkong Art Walk;  2011 IPCNY; Display of the century ACF New York, 2015; izbor v Eligius Schmuckpreis 2016, Avstrija; nagrada Kunstlitfasssaulen, Salzburg, 2016; priznanje 5. Lik. festivala Kranj 2016; srebrna medalja za fotografijo SNBA 2016) dodala še Grand Prix 6. Mednarodnega festivala likovne umetnosti v Kranju, Best Performance Art Award na United Solo Festival v New Yorku in Red Carpet Tribute Art Award 2017 na Dunaju. 

Njena dela so bila razstavljena na več kot 40 samostojnih in prek 60 skupinskih razstavah v Sloveniji, Argentini, Avstriji, na Danskem, Filipinih, v Grčiji, na Hrvaškem, v Italiji, Makedoniji, Mehiki, Nemčiji, na Poljskem, v Srbiji, Turčiji in ZDA. 

Pred tednom dni se je v New Yorku zaključila njena samostojna fotografska razstava An Echo… a Stain v Galeriji Mourlot, ki je Evo Petrič uvrstila med svoje umetnike. 

 

 

 

In her current exhibition 21st Cent EVA – in her skin, Eva Petrič presents herself with a selection of photos and a video,      created in the last eleven years, whereby most of them are being exhibited for the first time. In its content, the exhibition raises the question of women’s emancipation: The latter affects women on two levels: on the broader social level, manifested as the heritage of the struggle for equal treatment for women, and on the subjective level, where equality, equilibrium and freedom won, negotiated or taken by every woman  on her own or in her relationship with men. Both views mark the modern social aspect of the modern woman: the external aspect, built on cultural-sociologic, psychologic, economic research on one hand; and on the other hand the public image of the woman influenced by the stereotypes of the current fashion taste and aesthetic demands. And what is it like to be a modern woman? What is her outlook, her sense of the position and role dictated by contemporary society? The artist approaches this question in light of personal reflection on emancipation and the consequence of women’s entrapment in social norms and concepts. In content, the pain is mirrored as the basic tone, written into the matrix of woman’s nature and the special role she is playing or is forced to play. The title of the exhibition refers to the biblical Eve, anchored in the cultural-religious viewpoint of the western world, we could say about her that she had  everything, including freedom and equal position in relation to man, but due to wanting more she had lost all of this and was punished by being subordinated to man and doomed to suffering. Following her, the whole female sex was condemned to   suffering, striving for centuries to regain what the first woman was deprived of.  Petrič presents us the Eve of the 21st century as the 

personification of the modern woman, still unable to free herself completely from the restricting concepts and determining roles imposed by the society, still throwing a dark shadow over the emancipation. The Eve of the 21st century is a real woman, intellectually and emotionally awake, and not the artificial constructed type that is being imposed on her; fighting against the latter and rejecting the image of a doll and passive figure, not wanting to play according to man’s rules anymore, but instead be a woman, as is written in her nature. And the recognition of woman as equal to man in her difference from him is the essence of emancipation; otherwise, the goal is not reached. Petrič is dealing with a theme that exceeds the present time frame and in its universal meaningfulness unites not only women of the modern time, but of any age.  

A heart-breaking image of the woman’s cry on the colour photo Crown of Thorns introduces the exposition. The cry, escaped from the woman`s wide-open mouth, placed behind different screens, as patterned glass door, frozen pane, water surface or in the 

presented case behind the surface, covered with drops, is one of the recognisable motifs in her opus. The primary expression of wo- man’s pain, in art history most emotionally interpreted by dramatic scenes of baroque paintings and sculptures as the cry of desperate mothers at the Massacre of the Innocents (Guido Reni) or the powerless Nymph Daphne running away from the passionate Apollo (Gianlorenzo Bernini), is interpreted in Petrič’s work as imprisonment. In the woman’s figure, cutting in an aching thrust diagonally into the composition, as if being caught in the middle of a panic runaway by the camera, we feel the pain entering the viewer’s space and defining the basic tone of this exhibition. The pain is additionally accented by sticks, stabbed into the mouth and into the neck, alluding to the crown of thorns. As the tortured, repelled animal, doomed to pain if she talks, but even more if she does not, robbed of her real face, covered by a mask, she is the image of suffering, a woman, prisoner of false cognitions and expectations imposed by the outer world, hiding from the latter. No exit, no optimism is sensed; on the contrary: the drops on the surface additionally contribute to the impression that the figure, gasping for air, is drowning and the dark wave soon to cover her, magnifying the anxious impression of hopelessness.  

The second part of the exhibition, with black-and-white photographs and a colour video selected by the author, presents the motif of the shadow or reflection, characteristic for Petrič’s opus. The shadow is the metaphor for the woman silenced by others or retreating into silence. Eva’s game deals with the motif of the modern woman, reflecting the first woman in her genetic code and, as such, playing the sweet game of seduction, symbolised by the apple. The cross-shaped composition symbolises the cross a woman bears when she is following external and internal imperatives about her mission and role, burdening herself with her own image or the fact that she must be emancipated and surpass the man. The presentation can also be interpreted in a lighter tone as the innocent play of the woman, extending an invitation to the joys of life without prejudices, as the counterweight to all stereotypes attributed to the biblical Eve and consequently to the (modern) woman. The meaning of the apple, presenting temptation in the stylised colour shot and at the same time a material contrast to the non-tangible world of shadows, preponderates to the positive temptation as the promise of something sweet; it is the invitation to life, shining in intense colours. In other works, we sense a more moderate tone, gaining the impression that the game is lost. The modern Eve is, just as the biblical one, expelled from what was originally shared and cannot correct what defines her after her banishment into the outer world. Too many times she is seen as an object (of lust) or a trophy, represented by the Tropheada, a shadow projection of the female body in a seductive pose on the surface with attached labels saying trophy, acting as a projection of men’s wishes or social stereotypes. Or, she can be pushed into a corner, encompassed on photos from the cycles Fresco, Street Dog and Into the Corner, Out of the Corner, where the content is enhanced by the corner setup. On the first photograph we again meet with the dramatic cry, on the second the decisively stretched forefinger as a Michelangelo-like citation brings hope of awakening the resigned woman’s image withdrawn into the shadow. The toothed pattern is reminiscent of thorns and connects the works with the Crown of Thorns. In the video One Size Fits All, on the example of the statue of the Greek goddess of beauty, on which she projects her own shadow in grotesquely stretched proportions and fractures of the body, Petrič raises the question of imposed, artificially constructed beauty ideals that instil in woman the impression that she is not (sufficiently) beautiful. When women adapt to beauty ideals, a paradox may emerge: for the price of the beauty shining from their unique personality and given to them as a gift, they become uniform, even boring dolls, far removed from the spark of life. The Shadow of the Shadow, the largest work of this part of the exhibition, through its 

installation around the corner dynamically directs the viewer’s eye towards a gradual assembly of the whole and attracts viewer’s 

interest because of conspicuous content.The subtle image of a woman with wings, pensive in silent self-reflection, is presented in a mirrored reflection. It is designed in a way in which the central part of the composition is occupied by the wings, accenting liberation and exit from the constriction, and at the same time symbolising the transformation of the woman into an etheric being; as if 

emancipation is completely realised and possible only in the metaphysical sphere of living. 

The colour photographic diptych Crown of Chopsticks, replaying the motif of the woman as victim and rebel, represents the antipode to the Crown of Thorns: finally, the mask falls, the victim shows her changed face, fully focused, ready to fight. 

With works from the series Hematoma, we enter the kaleidoscopically colourful third exhibition part. The colour photographs in lit frames whose format is filled by the principle of the horror vacui, were created by the overlaying of colour photos of a woman in close view or in broader areal cut with photos of lace and their shadows. The series, named after hypodermic bleeding due to outer pressures, illuminates the danger of denying the exertion of pressure on the woman, so the emancipation is of vital importance to her. The lace net, which is otherwise an excellent product of arts and crafts that we view with pleasure, represents the entrapment of the woman. Simultaneously, it is read as the metaphor of the fragile beauty of the woman’s nature, which is, according to the artist, entrapped in her own skin, not able to escape from it. Entrapped in the nets of social patterns, mutual relationships, own feelings, thoughts, desires and suffering, she emerges in the role of active subject (as a seducer, thinking subject), and of passive subject at other times.  In some cases, we can sense the connection to fashion photography, but the aestheticized image reflects pain, as a row of false images stick to it, being imposed by the fashion industry. In the series, as an example, the questions of seduction as the woman’s weapon, or of 

suffering in love as represented by the woman with the extracted heart in the centre of the O’Keefean desert, are exposed, and the whole is rounded up by the desire for liberation with the bird spreading its wings.    

 

The work of Eva Petrič is marked by extraordinary expressive power, arising from introspection and intuitive discovery of contents, the need for creation leading the artist to astonishing results. She uses her body as the medium of creative expression; in this, we can rank her alongside strongly expressional authors such as Francesca Woodman and Cindy Sherman in the field of 

photography. Through her body, she gives women the right of word; she wants them to be considered, valued, unburdened of unreal expectations and demands and accepted as they are – in their own skin. Or, if we paraphrase the artist’s quote, the Eve of the 21st century exceeds the imperatives of fashion and public opinion and dares to live her own life in tune with her own heartbeat and in awareness of her preciousness. 

 

Mag. Andreja Rakovec

 

 

Eva Petrič, born in 1983 in Slovenia, works in Ljubljana, Slovenia, in Vienna, Austria, and in New York, USA, creating photography, video, installations, performance and literature. She graduated in 2005 in psychology and visual art at the Webster University in Vienna and defended her Master’s thesis in 2010 in new media at the Transart Institute Berlin/Danube University Krems.

In the last year, she added to her numerous awards (Award Čižek for Naj-digič  2006, Ljubljana; in selection of Slovenian art critics in February of 2008; Artist of the month of Art Lab, Vienna, June 2008; Scholarship of the Swiss Foundation Vordemberge-Gildewart in 2010; KH Pfann Ohmann Preis, Vienna 2011; K3 International short film festival Ljubljana 2012; finalist ID-Consoni public intervention Sondika 2012, Spain; in Selection of BIAB biennale 2012 and 2015, Peking; 2013 Hong Kong Art Walk;  2011 IPCNY; Display of the century ACF New York, 2015; in Selection of Eligius Schmuckpreis 2016, Austria; the award Kunstlitfasssaulen, Salzburg, 2016; award of 5. Art-Festival Kranj 2016; silver medal for photography SNBA 2016) also the Grand Prix of the 6th International Festival of Visual Arts in Kranj, the Best Performance Art Award at the United Solo Festival in New York and the Red-Carpet Tribute Art Award 2017 in Vienna.

Her works were exhibited in more than 40 individual and over 60 group exhibitions in Slovenia, Argentina, Austria, Denmark, Philippines, Greece, Croatia, Italy, Macedonia, Mexico, Germany, Poland, Serbia, Turkey and the USA. 

A week ago, in New York, her individual photographic exhibition An Echo… A Stain at the Gallery Mourlot ended, with Eva Petrič enlisted to the gallery’s artists.

 

www.evapetric.com