Back   →

More...

By Anatol Plotkin

 

The first points to the Greek myth of the humans as the split, incomplete creatures always in search of their "other half". This understanding of one's partiality and the emotional as well as physical longing towards completion and completeness finds its most common expression in the relationship of the sexes, in the stratagems and dances of the sexual union. Both the longing and temporary obliteration of the separate self alerts us to the power of Eros.

A second, less often explored aspect of Eros alluded in the works is the longing for perfection that the fleshly delights and human imperfections cannot deliver. It can be found only in the world of abstract ideas and ideal forms, like mathematics or religion. Among objects of encounter, nothing can compare to geometric forms in their demonstrable perfection.

The works in the series take these polar opposites as their point of departure and proceed to subvert erotic power by freely combining the elements of physical/abstract, procreative/creative, generative/recreational, striving/perfected into vital, seditious and allusive compositions. The sculptures seem to be caught "in the act" of either coming together or coming apart. No part of the composition can be seen or understood by itself — it is the interaction, the relationship between the compositional elements that creates the total effect of the work.
This potentially overwhelming collision, routinely depicted in contemporary art is as an arena of dysfunctionality, tragedy and failure is leavened in these works by a generous infusion of irony and humor. Paradoxically, it amounts to a second, sly subversion of the power of Eros. For if seen through the prism of humor, the mechanics and geometries of the sexual act in its predictable positions and repetitive motions can indeed be seen as laughable, undermining both the solemnity of their underlying urges and the high significance we tend to attribute to them.

As much as the works deploy humor to deflate the pretensions of Eros in the sexual, they also subvert the independence and asexuality of the ideal, geometric abstractions. For these can be seen here as capable of desiring, of messy engagement in the sordid acts of coupling and dependency on their complements. What we have here is a combustible mix of compromised perfection and geometrically perfected passions.perfected passions.