RELAPSE collective is pleased to present its first exhibition, with guest artist Penelope Koliopoullou, under the auspices of the Minister of Education and Culture of Cyprus, Dr. Costas Kadis. The exhibition focuses on the concept of identity as constructed and performed through social rituals and its embodied visceral manifestations. We invite the public and artists to take a step back from themselves, and join us in a ritual of self-observation in order to open the work to collective authorship negotiated between performer and viewer thus reclaiming the constructs of our own identity.
Created by artists Vasiliki Antonopoulou, Nikolas Kasinos and Dimitrios Michailidis, RELAPSE is an online community for artists working in various media. Beginning as an observation of affinities between their work, the artists came together to plan a group exhibition. The process led to the creation of RELAPSE. Placed within virtual space, RELAPSE is an explorer aiming to give artists from different disciplines and geographic locations, the opportunity to come together and produce collaborative work; an attempt to dissolve the limitations distance and boundaries impose upon collaborative artistic production.
I Don’t Want To Lose You by Vasiliki Antonopoulou aims to combine old traditions with pop culture as two ways of communication. One old and one new. One strictly site specific, and the other globally trending. As a life long expat, the performances in her video, show the artistʼs reflection on the place that forms a major part of her identity even though hardly present in its formation. Going back to Greece as an adult, an attempt to reconcile with the displacement felt there unfolds a conversation between body and space. Using performance as her tool, the artist performs her own baptism. This is done as a symbolic ritual to re-establish her roots with the place. By performing this ʻinitiationʼ, she allows her self to access old traditions and customs. A privilege that she uses in order to place a silver offering on the Church of Tinos, bearing the name of actress Eva Green - the prize she wished to gain. | vasilikiantonopoulou.com
Courage In The Face Of Reality by Nikolas Kasinos is an exploration of the self as it manifests and changes within the context of society. An on-going investigation of the meaning and power of ʻtruthʼ in relation to elements of human culture such as morals, ethics, stereotypes and traditions. Interested in the (oppressive) effect these concepts have on people and consequently the self and identity, the artist experiments with different materials, symbols and signifiers of national, cultural and socio-political realities. The tension between screen and performing act shifts contexts of public and domestic, opening the work to be negotiated between performer and viewer. With each individual performance an abstraction of the singularity, within the bigger context, is created. Even more so as a group of video performances, the installation emphasises the multiplicity and complexity of an attempt at locating the self within society. | nikolaskasinos.com
Oedipus III by Dimitrios Michailidis deals with the fundamental issues one encounters when attempting to place themselves in a society. A comment on a reality in which social injustice, cruelty and anger appear before our eyes, the effect they have on identity and the power dynamics generated. The great myth of Oedipus is applied as an allegorical comparison to the artist's own existence in an on-going research and experimentation with form, light and shadows. He is interested and inspired by forms of suppression deriving from highly structured communities and religions. By creating theatrical scenery which allude to the spirit of ancient Greek drama the artist creates an isolated meditative space where mind and emotions can be misplaced. | dimitrios.london
Self Portrait Series by Penelope Koliopoulou portrays stories about the everyday life of couples, by transforming herself into both partners through the medium of photography. She explores intimacy and sexuality through stories, which question the boy-meets-girl pattern of traditional Hollywood love stories. She presents a more realistic view into the workings of a love-relationship, by performing both positive and negative moments. Impersonating both partners she intends to make a comment on the issues of personal identity in a relationship and the abandonment of it, as well as gender and social stereotypes, while maintaining a level of humour. | showtime.arts.ac.uk/pennykoliopoulou
Sometimes Iʼm ARrt by Nikolas Kasinos is an exploration of the potentialities of gender and (online) identity through the continuous palimpsest of performance. Combining live performance and video the artist seeks to re-present fantasy and desire from a viscerally located ever re-writable subject point. Transformation and/or frustration are portrayed and experienced through characters manifesting spontaneously from the act of performance. | nikolaskasinos.com
28th April 2016 - 18:00 – 19:00
Maria Sideri will present her work 'Vibrant Matter / La Metachorie' and talk about how it relates to identity and possession, followed by a Q&A. 'Revisiting the times of the female multidisciplinary artist Valentine de Saint Point 100 years after their creation, this presentation will focus on my relationship to this woman as an initiation to make a work that recognises her contribution in art and politics. Reanimating her spirit in order to embody her work and life, Saint Point has guided me 100 years later in France and Italy and finally to Cairo where she has spent the last 25 years of her life, where I am also currently living.'
19th May 2016 - 18:00 – 19:00
Dr. Constantinos Phellas (Professor at University of Nicosia, Cyprus) will give a lecture on the identity development among ethnic minority lesbians and gay men, specifically Anglo-Cypriot men residing in London. He will be discussing some of the key cultural concepts and relevant historical factors that may shape the development of gay identity among Anglo-Cypriot men and provide accounts of sexual identity experiences provided by second-generation Cypriot gay men living in London to explore how these men negotiate their Cypriot and gay identities.
The first volume of our inaugural publication, bearing the theme of the exhibition, will be in print and available at the gallery reception. The artists featured have been selected through a submission process, which aimed to create an international and diverse publication.
Editor in chief: Vasiliki Antonopoulou