Curated by Evagoras Vanezis
Minerva Hotel, Platres / 6 August - 10 September 2023
The Minerva Hotel in Pano Platres, lying dormant for some time now, hosts the project “Key Change”, where three contemporary artists, Phanos Kyriakou, Peter Eramian and Maria Spivak, suggest a series of sculptural gestures-installations that activate the space and the senses. Audiences are invited to approach these installations as elements of a dramaturgy where a suspended sense of time takes over. The protagonists of the story are unknown, but the imprints of their actions are everywhere to be seen.
This exhibition is presented in the framework of Safely Held, a series of exhibitions and events produced by Pylon Art & Culture, in collaboration with invited curators from May - December 2023.
.This neon work comments on the often-difficult relationship between people and their locality. The perception of locality is underscored by feelings of intimacy and the demands of love, which make for complex mechanisms of relating to place. A take on Joseph Beuys' declaration "I Like America and America Likes Me" from 1974, Kyriacou here communicates a self-conscious expectation for a reciprocal relation and uses his own handwriting to highlight the social dimensions of being. Public Note (2012)
.This exaggerated lamp was created from memory by the artist along with a metal craftsman. It is evocative of a moment when during a long walk, the surrounding area took on a cinematic texture. Beyond its utilitarian value, the lamp appeared almost like a (misplaced) prop. This mnemonic reconstruction signifies a similar object that is somewhere in Berlin. By chance, it is also similar in design to the lamps on the outside of Minerva Hotel. How much of the memory relies on reality and how much on fantasy is hard to
decipher. Illuminated Scene (2013)
.The drawings are an expression of sculptural ideas on paper, whilst playing upon the convention of a still life. Kyriakou is pursuing two different yet interrelated ideas. One concerns the challenge of formal abstraction and the other balance in composition. For the artist, it is almost impossible to move away from representation, especially in sculpture, as each form is invariably found in nature. The tinted glass subtly obscures the viewing of the drawn forms, creating a colour field that draws our attention to the interplay between material, light and sight. Fig(ure) I - II - III (2023)
.The work concerns the joining together of two found materials: pine wood, taken from a support structure in construction, and door handles, which remind of domestic environments. The handles are polished and show signs of having been struck. This is due to being tested out to access whether the material is real bronze or plated aluminum. Any handle is a performative object: it awaits the activation of a hand that will turn it, whilst hinting at the existence of other spaces. This performativity is intensified here by their positioning and reflections, which distort viewing by enveloping the viewer in them. Door Handles (2020)
.This neat and symmetrical piece of wood was found on the side of a road construction. The stainless steel additions support it and create a new sculptural space out of it. The smell of pine wood is complicated by the addition of cypress oil on its surface. The viewer is called upon to come close to the sculpture, ‘invading’ the space and using smell to connect with the sculpture. As the different smells intermingle, the memories, places, and landscapes that spring to mind interpolate in the present. Cypress Pine (2016)
.The work concerns an artistic exploration of how materials stand witness to life and to the force of bodies that come into contact with them. Two used bar stool seats, with substantial wear and tear on their surface, are treated with layers of lacquer and placed on the wall. Their original use is voided, and the materials take a life of their own, entering into a dialogue with the history of the object. The resulting surfaces remind of landscapes with powerful movement. Bar Stools (2019)