Özgür Kar, Adriana Lara & Dena Yago

curated by Elisa R. Linn & Lennart Wolff

Emalin, London

Nov 10 – Dec 15, 2018

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Archive Fever brings together three artists – Adriana Lara (1, 2), Özgür Kar (3) and Dena Yago (4) – who employ techniques such as frame by frame animation (3), printmaking (1) as well as drawing (2, 4). They use carbon paper (1), muslin (4), canvas (2), TV screens (3) and a fridge (2). They share an interest in how memory is externalized – how language, ideas, and images travel and are inscribed into objects. They point towards manners in which the technical mechanisms of archivisation and reproduction – the prostheses of so-called live memory – shape the conception of the future and possibly the future itself.

  1. The four carbon prints Carbon Copy 4×6, contained behind plexiglass, belong to an antiquated process of transferring information from one object onto another. Rather than functioning solely as an in-between medium, the seemingly generic pattern of the silkcreen print constitutes the work’s pictorial content and bears the potential for future overwriting.
  2. The red-striped polygonal canvas Interesting Theory #54 (Marketing Diet Coke), stems from an archive of shapes and ‚ideas‘ that comprise her ongoing series Interesting Theories, wherein each theory consists of a set of shapes and arrangements that evolve out of the preceding ones. These provide the geometric markers and compositional rules for descendant forms in an apparently linear progression from past to present. However, the work moves between the causal bonds of recollection (the new traced back to the old) and a moment of repetition beyond a causal chain (the old becomes new). Hanging on hinges, the picture plane opens up to reveal a fridge filled with cans of Diet Coke – sugar-free and ubiquitous, abstracted into geometry on the painted surface – that bring to mind the success-promising operations of decluttering life, mind and fridge.
  3. In Monologue 5 and Monologue 6, two delicately outlined characters resting in and against a black background are stuck in an intimate whispering dialogue about remorse, everyday banalities and libidinal exuberance. Recounting moments of longing and encounter generates both an archive of the said and the unsaid – and a testimony of the relationship between the inside and outside of language, between the utterable and the unspeakable. Highly personal in tone and substance, these figures find themselves on the edge of disappearing into a murmur of statements and caught in a private and collective cinema of consciousness.
  4. The mural Live, Laugh, Love, Fuck, Marry, Kill is a monochrome cartoonish drawing directly applied onto the wall. It depicts the indelible Depression-era Kit Cat Klock on
    a shrink‘s couch as well as the Cheshire Cat, whose famous grin endures even as its body dissolves. Both characters circulate in the public domain as containers for narrative. Faced with colliding systems of image-making and storytelling, allegory becomes the psychic centre that holds together the fragile construct of extended metaphor. The mural collapses the divide between the symbolic and the literal, the internal and external – equating objects within a narrative with meanings outside of it.


Courtesy of the artists and Emalin, London
Photos by Plastiques

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