January 16, 2015
A day in a painter’s life.
I am making these comments behind a small glass piece: the threshold that makes me feel like I am in a showcase placed so high to be observed by the passers-by from the street.
And I melt to be able to profoundly include the state of everyone who is walking by, in a hurry or not, to take care of their affairs. I reconcile with their laughter and the heaviness of their steps left behind the topcoat shadow.
The hats give me joy, like eclipses with smaller or bigger rays-only accents of the scenery that I admire from here, my own place.
Until now I was green-cold! Please pay attention to my eyes. Do you have the courage to see what I see?
You can escape, or throw out or ignore anything you have on hand in this moment so that you can rest for a single moment together with me in this showcase?
Do you have the strength to fully immerse in this experience with yourselves and let your thoughts flow, let your dreams go the way they want-down on the knees?
My retina is full of reds and warmth even though my skin is still shivering…
If you would like to feel, I would send you all the feelings that travel through my body and the tears that stretch trying to find my eyes and not on the cheek-tears like an undecided magnifying glass which brings closer and then sends away blacks and reds and greens and coats and topcoats.
In this hotel room here with me lay on the bed my body and desire, the longing and the quietness, the wishful thinking and the fear.
Is a struggle and a noise that I cannot hear anymore because of this wild excitement inside: of sacrifice and pursuit, which Nietzsche called the Will of Power.
And now I am with my thoughts really far away from honesty; I am thinking only to give something meaningful to humanity. But as Renan said you need to “sacrifice yourself and to go higher than the baseness in which so many people live their lives”.
But sometimes with showcase in which I lay seems to narrow and the window is dirty or blurry. In order to see better, I press my face and my hands against it: I clearly feel now that we are two distinct entities but together we push towards something – we build an image.
When you long for something you don’t have, the walls start to seem heavy and your soles seem not to be stable on the floor which becomes an elevator that throws you higher, which for you means you are further away from that real showcase.
Who is buying you? Who can see you? As you are already sold to your soul and the stiffness of your own judgement.
Regardless, you are the master of your own dreams which were frozen forever in your crust. You want to be a window, the walls to tremble, the plaster to fall!
I was talking about an exhibition revealed in the intimacy of a hotel room where Hope was kept captive when outside is a wilderness due to so much seeking. Or the deep desires of a young artist. It seems that one autumn day she laid at the bottoms of the Montmartre hill: LUXIA.
The walls and the undressed bed know what it means to want and to push back, to forget and understand. For me a full day is a day that permits me to experience many forms, to ask myself many things.
A new town will always be a place for a new question and therefore the hotel becomes the maternity of your doubts. The end of that day will bring all thoughts and moments to a single point, and that will become your room for the evening, not curious at all to get to know you. This will give you the intimacy to disclose. The intimacy in which you can rest so that afterwards you can express yourself. The art stains.
And what catches your attention? A transparent image, if it permits to what happens outside enrich your reflection, but refractive, because it contains you inside.
The hotel window is the moment you needed to really look inside yourself.
Therefore, I am starting with the idea that I confront my double, with complex capacities, able to transcendent impressions and expressions and at the same time to make the difference between the two.
I confront two existences, which function after rules that do not meet, but which coexists embraced in the filter we call thinking. Cogito ergo sum said Descartes.
But I cannot say it applies to my painting anymore.
As long as the expressions I unload on the canvas do not belong to me, but they are dictated from somewhere inside is clear that we cannot talk about thinking. The only explanation I find in the tunes that are being born inside is that I am only the liaison between them and the canvas-therefore a dialog is being born through me.
The conclusion I reach is that the painting material is the one that carves my personality.
The painting is the one that gives reason to my existence.
We are talking about the quality of the perseverance and the devotion towards my own ideal.
My canvases develop a peace that does not know the silence and an equilibrium that is shaking because the states described are unstable. Man is the inside character whose echo vibrates the same time with the power of intuition, so that only during vacations can pretend he forgot his rationality.
This is how my fantasy is being born, ample so that it allows me to look for a method through which I can express change, the becoming.
I always start with a witness sheet, already folded. I do not bother to unfold it, but I start working on it the way it is, the way I found it. The paint stains find their way on the other side of the sheet… From the beginning, the other parts felt the hot coals and the diluted paint which was slopping on the canvas I was working on. I dared to do this just to see what are the consequences of this kind of craziness, this kind of unleashing, this kind of evening.
Each moment changes the next. Every stain is a footprint.
No decision can be changed or not without signs. This project made me confront the trial to cover old wounds- possible only when the lie is sincere, because on a sheet everything is transparent.
The project that I am working at right now, is more less THE ECHO of the feelings I was describing in the text before. The HOTEL became a leitmotif of my actual work. I have recently started to include other words in my work. When I write, I choose words also depending on how they look next to each other. This has made me want to separately analyse words, and make compositions with neon letters. For the same reason, on some of my canvases appear snatches of phrases, names or hidden messages.
Both in writing and in painting, I like to use repetition. Is how I am suggesting the echo – so my presence, and yet obsession with certain words or pictures / items – which I would call my weakness.
The video is a more direct method to merge the two: the art of speaking and the one of laying down colours on canvas.
Taking all these in consideration, I build new hotels, with different names (double or triple sensed words, such as: VISE – Romanian and French word, with different meanings in each language). Is still about each person’s universe, as I was describing in 2005 the room from LUXIA Hotel, in Montmartre, as the artist’s studio, as the most intimacy and confident place of a person. Just that now the perspective is larger. The game is more complex, with more rules and elements involved: the architecture, the space, the artificial light placed next to the natural light, the matter of the interior and the exterior and the relation between the two. I place the neon words compositions on the outside of the building, and the canvases on the inside. I film the moment, the people’s reaction, the performance that I do, in order to indicate the way I want to make people watch my work. The dynamic of the elements and the place of the frames in space. The rhythm in between. All together are building steps in time and space.
It is important for me, to speculate the paintings’ ability to stretch, to take place in a space. To suggest the length, the distance, I use the video camera: I create a screen outside painting, in which items enter and leave. It is the idea of collage, for which, the painting itself becomes a character. From the outside, the scene that I compose has the aspect of a hotel, where people are invited to enter: the art gallery.
All the interventions that I make are evidences of the artist being present. Is my willing to make you feel my breath, intentions, hesitations, courage and seeks in the centre of my painting. So I transform myself in a shadow, stacked in this hotel, where people are allowed to come and to leave whenever they want. From this point of view, the hotel, the project that I am working on right now, is a self-portrait, is a story that I create as a context for my consciousness wanted to be shown, exhibited.
“YOU CAN push the floor with the weight of your body to get to know your presence. You know how to spin more dynamically than anyone else. You weight the essence of every gesture, of every glance, of every sound. And still, who is the one that knows how to really jump, when you don’t separate yourself from the heaviness of your condition?” I would ask now. Followed by this kind of questions, I think day and night by organizing in different architectural spaces, between some walls, reflections of my intentions, pieces of my body, traces of the connections that I make with air, with places. I place the painting and I shoot doing this, to let people understand that I have already been there, and so, that, when they enter the gallery, they are stepping on my body, they are allowed to read my thoughts, they have the music of my voice, being on my territory. It’s some kind of script or recipe that I am proposing them, by organizing this kind of exhibition: A HOTEL. The walls of this hotel have the quality of absorbing all the energy I consume in it where I paint, I write, I sleep, I dress myself and, from time to time, I eat. I have done this once, in Brasov () and I will continue doing it: spending time with the building I choose for organizing my exhibition. Two days before the exhibition in Brasov I have painted all the canvases there. Is challenging. This way, the exhibition space becomes nothing less than my studio – the home for the artistic process, time that I am trying to shoot and to show it to you. Different days spent into a place turn into a simple image that I frame and then, edit again and again. You can call it a place, as well as a word, as well as a person, as well as a painting exhibition.
Ioana Alexandra Niculescu-Aron was born in Bucharest, Romania. She obtained a BA Painting degree at the National University of Arts in Bucharest. Before turning 21, She was awarded with a scholarship at Accademia di Belle Arti di Brera Milano and exposed works in over 15 places in Romania, Germany, the United States and Italy. Currently she is studying at HEAR Strasbourg-Mulhouse (Haute école des arts du Rhin), France.