Elijah Wheat Showroom, in collaboration with Bubu Arts, is proud to present contemporary Hungarian sculptor Zsófia Keresztes with her first solo exhibition in the United States, “Glossy Inviolability”.
When you cry, what do you cry for? Do you cry for animals? Do you cry for the Earth? Do you cry for the ocean? Do you cry for others, for humanity? We ride a wave of compassion, yet is it all a pretense, merely the facade of empathy? How do we prove that we actually care? Keresztes’ work challenges the viewer to go beyond the enjoyment of the aesthetic to a frank interrogation of the challenging symbolism within the beautiful structures.
Here are works which nod towards the idea of an abandoned spider web, of teardrops joined in a “network”. The tears, Keresztes has suggested, represent social media and its predatory claims on our sadness - and the sadness of others. Using a pastel palette of tiles, Keresztes’ formidable technique creates a mosaic which becomes an actual web of tears, linked to the habits we form of searching to assuage our feelings of self-pity, our projections, our need for others to notice and see us.
The central figure in the gallery greets us as “a robust woman figure in a waiting position, gleaning the acquired attention,” Keresztes says. This woman “sacrifices herself on a bed of nails, her body decaying into pieces. Then, she incorporates them together again joining into the circulation.” The pixelated body folds into itself, encompassing the figure’s virtual and actual being. Her mission is to feed off the grief of others, while her pretense is that of inviolability. Her sham empathy, its unbearable weight, is represented by the form of a superficial teardrop which smashes down on her limbs.
Empathy is a magic word, a feeling everyone apparently wants to own. Like a wizardly still life, it purports to provide the key to the other’s personal pain and grief. But how genuine - or how phony - are the tears that drop from a shared loss on social media? It’s hard to negotiate through the web of ironically disconnected connectedness. Flocks of sentiment flow into the comment section; all valuable, yet only some solidified by the follow-up and the reality of human presence.
Please join us for the opening reception on Leap Day, February 29th, 2020 from 6:00PM to 9:00PM. Elijah Wheat Showroom is also part of NADA Gallery Open, taking place March 5-8th, with an informal artist talk at the gallery beginning at 2:00PM.
Zsófia Keresztes (1985 Budapest; lives and works in Budapest)
Her sculptures and installations have recently been shown in, amongst others, at 15th Lyon Biennale, Institut d'art contemporain de Villeurbanne; Web of Wet, Trafó Gallery, Budapest; Stone Telling, Kunstraum Niederösterreich, Vienna; Fingertips, Carl Kostyál, London; Love Data, 16th Alios Biennale, La Teste de Buch; Bels Animals, Château du Feÿ, Villecien; Liquid Bodies, Philara Collection, Düsseldorf; 100 Artistes Dans La Ville, Montpellier-Séte, Brno Art Open, Brno; Streamlines of the Jungle, MAGMA, Sf. Gheorge; Sunbaked Thirst With Love, Ena Viewing Space, Budapest; La Revedere, Schimmel Projects, Dresden(all 2019); Sticky Fragility, Gianni Manhattan, Vienna; Éntomos, Prague City Gallery, Prague; Orient, Galeria Bunkier Sztuki, Krakow; L’Esprit Souterrain, Domaine Pommery, Reims; Jutro, Castor Projects, London; Somewhere in between, BOZAR, Brussels; Orient, Kim?, Riga; The Rest / In Peace, 115-106, Budapest; Haptic House, Horse and Pony, Berlin; Acéphale, AQB project space, Budapest; Prospects, Base-Alpha Gallery, Antwerp; Facing Enemies, Melting Opposites, Karlin Studios, Prague (all 2018); Occupations of Uninhabited Space, Gianni Manhattan, Vienna; Esterházy Art Award, Ludwig Museum, Budapest; Abstract Hungary, Künstlerhaus- Halle für Kunst und Medien, Graz; Afterbirth of a Dream, Meetfactory, Prague; Letting Go, Trafó Gallery, Budapest; Endless Backup, Futurdome, Milan (all 2017); HOLYLAND, Labor, Budapest; The existential space of virtuality, Erika Deák Gallery, Budapest(all 2017); You dreamt with straight lines, I did with curves, which had acid shadows, Trafó Gallery; #vaporfolk #hollyvoodoo. Sponsored by Amazon Readymades., Lust Gallery, Vienna; The Dys-Picture Generation, Art+Text, Budapest; Data Mining, ENA Viewing Space, Budapest; On Paper II., Erika Deák Gallery,Budapest (all 2016).