Article by Angela Connor in Berlin; Saturday, Dec. 22, 2012
Activating the gallery space with acrylic paint, cardboard, foil, plexiglass, paper, cellophane and enamel, Diana Sirianni’s exhibition at Figge von Rosen Galerie forms a vibrant aesthetic of abstract forms and shapes. Composing the illusion of suspended objects floating in the space and wild growths spawning upwards, these bits of ubiquitous materials create an immersive installation, forming a pendulous cosmos of objects.
The exhibition title, Stecklingsvermehrung, which means cutting propagation, relates to the bits and pieces of paper as an plant structure, which grow metaphorically and collaborate with the obstacles of the space. Incorporating the architecture, Wildwuchs, spills onto the floor, scales walls, manifests on the windows and ceiling, with no seemingly centre location from where the work has emerged.
To walk through the installation is like being caught in the midst of an explosion: a hundred or so objects that form clusters of accidental assortments. The work is simultaneously energetic, beautiful and fragile: a cacophony of textured fragments. The artificial shapes and contours of the materials, with the help of transparent line, are carefully composed to look like a haphazard encounter mimicking the aftermath of a chaotic encounter. The ephemeral materials that Sirianni uses suggests an impermanence in the world: a construct of a disposible world that fills us with paper and other bits of objects. These entities reflect the constant state of flux in the world, suggesting destruction and rebirth simultaneously.
The use of materials dangling precariously and the dispersed fragments that interact with the space is typical of Italian artist Siranni’s recent work (as seen in her series Longing for a Centre shown in Arnsberg, Germany; Caramel Escape shown in Berlin, Germany; and Unwrapping Candies shown in New York, United States). Stecklingsvermehrung, as with these previous works is a site-specific installations for a single time and place. As the exhibition progresses, Siranni develops the work, adding more bits and pieces, extending the framing of piece. In doing this, she critiques traditional ideas of boundaries and dissolves any possible borders between the space and artwork.
In the adjoining room are eight photographic collages that document the installation of Wildwuchs. Combining photographs, coloured paper, tape, paint and silicon, Sirianni presents these collages in wooden and steel frames, blurring the line between photography, sculpture and painting. Juxaposed against the ephemeral nature of the works, the photographs becomes the evidentiary proof of the installation in time. Through the photographic reproduction of the image, the viewer is able to observe the installation in a new light, positioned within a frame that Sirianni has created. Together, Siranni lattices a pictorial and physical experience, creatively dissolving the slippery edge between image and world.
Angela Connor is an Australian writer, photographer and curator currently based in Berlin. She has worked in both commercial and independent art spaces, as well as teaching at the Victorian College of the Arts, Melbourne, Australia, as part of the KPMG Tutorship Award. In 2008 she received her Masters of Fine Arts by Research examining the portrayal of blindness in 20th Century photography.