Bid Project Gallery is currently showing ‘ON-SCREEN AND OFF’, a group exhibition curated by Domenico de Chirico, featuring woks by BB5000, Gina Folly, Michele Gabriele, Tilman Hornig, Pakui Hardware, Jaakko Pallasvuo, Nicolas Pelzer, Sung Tieu, and Yannick Val Gesto.

In a world populated by intelligent and pervasive technologies, among sensory experiences and necessary demonstrations, how further will men be able to tread the path of recreating Nature and what will it mean to be free in a world that potentially knows everything about everyone?

BB5000. ‘Ruins’ generated by the supposed survival of ornamental codes emerge from mire. It is a sentient fauna coded under zero-set polar coordinates; a satiating, transfiguring filter menu. ‘Girls do it in the mud (serenity evolution)’. The girls are sending you inner peace and serenity. A primitive layout shapes up over a landscape of rocky cliffs.

Gina Folly. ‘Me you 2’ are replicas of the artist’s ears, sculpted in marble. It’s a series of five pairs, three pairs made out of white marble from Carrara (Tuscany) and two out of Portuguese marble in a neutral hue. Each of the pieces is original and handmade, and togetherthey form a series. Gina Folly created them last year during her residency in Rome at Istituto Svizzero. The work was inspired by a series of photographs of ears by Isa Genzken that she took in the early eighties in New York. Already during her studies at art school, Gina had worked on several imitations of the photo series from Genzken with her ears. She recalls having had an issue with them since being a kid, because they are super-tiny but they stick out and it was always a topic of conversation with her family and friends. During her residency last year in Rome, she got very inspired by all the fantastic sculpture works of the city. That’s how the ear topic came up again and it was a perfect moment to finally objectify them. For their production, the artist worked together with a sculptor from San Lorenzo, an offbeat student neighbourhood in Rome.

Michele Gabriele. Self-contained ‘FakeFriend’ is an attempt to outline experiences and reveal the sharpest and most unnecessary details of personal or generic stories. The artist muses about how the human mind will sometime charge everyday objects with a responsibility of some sort, and he has chosen his materials for their ability to meet those inclinations. He calls to mind a recurring mental image of a woman walking into a house, opening a drawer, finding an hairbrush in it and bursting into tears right after. This is why he has chosen items that have the ability to convey mixed emotions, to be at the same time, daily or common, but also items that would only exist as themselves, with the capacity to remain very open in their simplicity. In Michele Gabriele’s words ’FakeFriend’ is a little sad, like a feeling of slight pain: reminiscent of a laugh immediately after crying.

Tilman Hornig. Initially the artist began the ‘TXT on Devices’ series with texts on canvases. Text serves as a medium and body of content in a broader sense. The pieces consist of multiple text sources that combined and abstracted into new ones are no longer understandable—their sources rendered incomprehensible. The generated text results in a new entity appearing as complicated and generalist as possible. On the one hand the vehicles for the text are technical devices like a hard drive that opens its own space of association or on the other hand they can be a hand-made canvas looking like a classic painting. The artist’s concern lies in the anticipation and association of content / content that appears immediately to the viewer / reader, as soon as he / she perceives a text.

Pakui Hardware. ‘The Metaphysics of the Runner’ (Resin, carbon sheet, 23x56 cm) is part of a large-scale namesake installation. It embodies the hybrid condition of a body today—somewhere between organic and artificial, between an inefficient vehicle and an incredible mechanism, between being prepared for the future with active sports or chemical supplements and being doomed to become obsolete and left behind by new forms of existence. In ‘In the Blink of an Eye’ (3D motion graphics, 0:40 min.) the blinks of a human eye have been accelerated to present a comic vision of a human attempt to keep pace with certain technological devises. The expression “A blink of an eye” has so far been used to convey the shortest possible fraction of time, yet this ‘obsolete’ notion is to be now redefined in relation to phenomena such as the algorithmic interactions in High-Frequency Trading. Those algorithms trade and make decisions at a pace that no human being would be able to keep up with and to comprehend.

Jaakko Pallasvuo. In ‘Nu Painting (Documentary)’ the artist reflects upon his digital painting practice from the point of view of a far future, where technological interfaces are no longer necessary.

Nicolas Pelzer. The series ‘Muscle Remainder’ consists of water-jet cut foam wall objects that associate inlays of toolboxes custom-made to protect the instruments. Among recognizable shapes, like a crowbar or a screwdriver, the viewer discovers silhouettes that are difficult to classify, making the whole composition an abstract placeholder for unknown variables. Muscle Remainder conjures up the physical effort and labour that a tool both requires and produces in contrast with the machine-controlled cut outs of the piece.

Sung Tieu. ‘Wind’: it is a glass mirror showing a bird swarm formation, which is traced and then erased. Specifically, it looks at the swarm formation of the Northern Wheatear, a passerine bird, which has one of the furthest migration routes out of all small birds. The birds migrate from Alaska to Africa twice a year. The mirror is held up by water wings, which are swim aids designed for children to further investigates the necessity of certain species to migrate and how that instinctual need to survive leads to movement. The work, by physically reflecting viewers in the mirror once standing in front of it, forces an active engagement with the sculpture and elicits a reflection about the viewers’ “position” towards these issues.  

Yannick Val Gesto. ‘Babyborn’: the artist admits to a self-confessed tendency to look for 'hidden gems' online— an act which fuels his art practice. He tries to find ‘rare’ pieces of visual integrity that can range from fan art to photographs to personalised memes, etc. What is most important to him throughout the search for visual material is that there be a notion of emotion or expression, a longing for happiness in digitalisation, no matter how naive or ugly the piece might be. It's this specific type of visual information that he likes to alter into something of his own. That—backed up by a formation in graphic design—results in compositions drenched with information and aesthetics shiny at times, dirty at others.

Exhibiting artists: BB5000, Gina Folly, Jaakko Pallasvuo, Michele Gabriele, Nicolas Pelzer, Pakui Hardware, Sung Tieu, Tilman Hornig, Yannick Val Gesto

ON-SCREEN AND OFF - Curated by Domenico de Chirico
Bid Project Gallery, 25 March - 30 April.