ARTIST IN GALLERY PRIZE
Artist: Maria Agureeva
Location: Galerie Isabelle Lesmeister, Ratisbona, Germany
Opening: 22nd September 2018, 6.00 p.m.
Exhibition: 25th September - 17th November 2018
In March 2018, during the awarding ceremony of the 12th Arte Laguna Prize, Russian artist Maria Agureeva (Moscow, 1985) was the winner of the Special Prize “Artist in Gallery”. Isabelle Lesmeister, owner of the gallery of the same name based in Regensburg (Germany), selected Maria Agureeva for “her unique usage of synthetic materials such as latex and plastic she knows well how to create a certain connection, a synergy, between what is materiality and what can be seen as identity”.
The solo exhibition “It will always be not enough” will open on September 22nd and can be visted until November 17th.
The exhibition displays the series of latex works that Maria creates by taking advantage of contrasting materials. In this series she combines two materials , which work on the contrast with each other: latex and synthetic plastic. Natural latex represents something living, moving and soft, whereas synthetic plastic is like a stunning armor with absolutely artificial, but extremely attractive surface, which fascinates and keeps the attention on itself. In the soft and flexible folds of the crumpled latex sheet, Maria pours semi-transparent colored plastic, where bright fluorescent stains, and drips get set and layer up, creating some kind of tempting synthetic caramel. The result is a series of works balancing between naturalism and abstraction that can evoke a wide variety of associations, from somatic and culinary to geological and iconographic ones.
As if obeying the idealistic imperative of today’s mass culture, the artist transforms the human prototype, imperfect and perishable, into an attractive object, a striking blend of various materials. Her art is focused on studying the tension between normality and subjectivity, investi- gating the attractiveness criteria and the necessity of making a perfect image. She believes this is where the conflict between natural appearance and artificial beauty standards reveals. Bringing into contact naturality and the imposed need for conventional beauty, Maria chooses a synthetic material that emphasizes the opportunities of body transformation, which has become some sort of contemporary cult.
The materials that Agureeva uses as an alchemical reaction conjoin into a single multilayered whole, preserving their connection with natural raw matter: minerals (gypsum, pigments), liquids (paints, binders), plants (latex, resins). Maria Agureeva's artistic research is characterized by her sensitivity to various materials and textures, her usage of pure color as an emotional trigger, the strange and sensual form of her objects, where the permanent cyclic mutations of geological structures correlate with the metamorphosis that undergoes our mortal body. The series works with deep time that is not hidden in the restless tempo-rhythms of human life but in the slow pulse of the Earth.
IT WILL ALWAYS BE NOT ENOUGH from 25.09 to 17.11.2018 at Galerie Isabelle Lesmeister – opening 22.09.2018 at 6pm
Exhibition statement by Anna Arutyunyan and Andrey Egorov