Recent artworks by artists Alana Lake and Marianna Ignataki.
Although both artist’s choice of materiality and style are very different, they share a fascination with investigating the psychological effects of sexual fetish and the creation of seemingly unresolvable opposites within their artworks.
Influenced by motorcycle and car culture, Alana Lake makes highly aestheticized sculptures and paintings that simultaneously seem like ancient archeological finds and/or alien objects from the future. Made predominantly from glass, the items her sculptures are based on have ceased to function and their ordinary use is denied. Their functionality may be obsolete but their implicit usage is still inherent, now rendered absurd and almost comical.
Lake’s sculptures are both sex objects and objects of sexual fetish. BLACK & BLUE and Smokin’, for example, are highly charged, transformed objects of pure desire. The motorcycle helmet’s surface is so seductive and so shiny, you want to instantly lick it but never wear it for protection as, in case of an impact, the shattered glass would instantly penetrate your brain and would kill you. You want to touch and caress the fragile flames coming out of the stainless steel exhaust system, knowing the flames are made of cool glass and aren’t hot fumes anymore. And yet, although Lake’s sculptures are visual and tactile candy of the highest quality and made to seduce you, the idea of death is still always prevalent – a motorcycle helmet always pointing towards a fatal crash and exhaust fumes causing cancer and global warming. The drive for pleasure always precedes but also always incorporates the drive for death.
Sourced from fashion magazines and online image searches, Marianna Ignataki’s drawings take you on a journey of psychedelic colors and phantasmagorical, dreamlike scenarios where everything seems well only for a very short while. There is trouble in this beautiful paradise as her fairy tales are of adult nature. Snake’s tongues, like umbilical cords, connect characters and protrude from singular mouths and one wonders – are the figures in a state of expectant strangulation, consumption of each other or poisoning? Are they purposeful lovers or are they random enemies? Are we looking at ghosts from the past or manifestations from a parallel universe? Are we passive onlookers or participants in this alternate reality? Do Ignataki’s ethnographic black hair and fabric sculptures represent floating Demons or Gods? Which era and which country are they from?
Both artists are united against a uniformity of thought and by the development of various kinds of fetishisms.
Maybe the best way to experience this exhibition is to just sit back and enjoy the ride.