“Re- enactment” @ Plet – Amsterdam
Natalia Rolón – Featuring Henrik Olai Kaarstein and Babette Semmer
All the images courtesy of the artists.
Pictures by Diego Diez.
It’s the 17th of March: I am in South Holland, listening to a clock chime in New Zealand through the spilled sounds of a Skype conversation conducted behind my back. Behind me, a funeral is being arranged, and in front of me, I predict the beginning of this exhibition. And as I ruminate on how to introduce Natalia’s work, I realize that the absurdity of this fragmented spatial arrangement (a collage of spaces and subjects that logically do not reside in one room) is also that which Natalia’s still lives present. Registering first as coincidence, I soon reconsider my thoughts – realizing that these compositions are representations of contemporary everyday life: enactments of reenactments, presentations of representations, portraits of the continuous restructuring of space and time. Re-enactment is a solo exhibition by Natalia Rolón that presents artists and architects in contemporary frames. Presented from her position as a female artist reflecting on art history and its male-centered views, this series of work is purposefully represented through her own subjectivity. Formulated by a personal return to watercolors, Natalia portrays her subjects in the constantly moving temporal and spatial spectrums in which they reside. Through this Natalia captures them in their current state, presenting the commercial appropriation that reduces these individuals from artists to figures – to symbols, to names, to brands that subsequently shift their value and meaning.
This exhibition also features the work of Babette Semmer and Henrik Olai Kaarstein who, framing the installation, present (and are presented by) Natalia’s Re-enactment. Through continuous layering, Natalia directs the studio, home, museum and network into play. And it is only now that I realize that Natalia’s compositions consist entirely of exposed frames; the image of the landscape I thought I saw drawing back to reveal a representation of backstage.