By inhabiting the character of a YouTube vlogger, Gery talks us through a series of beauty and skincare regimes including her All Eyes on Me look and the Damsel ‘n’ De-Stress self-care routine. Using humour as a tool to explore ideas around the quest for continuous self-improvement, we see Gery cover her face in layer upon layer of beauty products and DIY make-up made from everyday household items and the disposable goods found in pound shops and discount stores. Commenting on the cultural compulsions that manifest in us as a result, Gery’s work addresses how the female body is instrumentalised and commodified by economies of value such as advertising across both digital and physical spheres. Responding to the unique environment of the hairdressing salon - which many associate with feelings of anxiety and unease - Gery places her own image and neuroses at the foreground of the haircut experience, providing a distraction and respite from the client’s own.
In a form of preservation akin to flower pressing, red roses entombed in concrete blocks and decorated with eyeshadow and nail caviar will be observed as they dry up and decay over the course of the show. These DIY, cheap materials recur frequently in Gery’s work as well as the Rose which is a symbol of both nationhood and womanhood in Gery’s native Bulgaria as well as being a symbol of beauty in Britain: the archetypal ‘English rose’. Alongside them, a plastic bag laden with concrete, featuring a reproduction of a glamorous diva branded as ‘Dreams’ lays as if forgotten in the aisles…
Gery Georgieva (b. 1986, Varna, Bulgaria) lives and works in London and is a recent graduate from the Royal Academy Schools. Georgieva’s work encompasses video, sculpture, performance, multimedia installations and occasional musical collaborations. By creating lo-fi assemblages and film sets for performative to-camera improvisations, Gery uses the immediacy of her own body as material to consider the construction of taste, personal empowerment and belonging. Selected solo projects include: Swimming Pool Projects, Sofia, Bulgaria (2017); Hunter / Whitfield, London, UK (2017); ANDOR, London, UK (2016) and Frieze Film commissioned by Random Acts Channel 4 for Frieze Art Fair (2015).