Gesturing towards Solitude is a pilot group exhibition curated by Carmen Casiuc, advancing the mission of Redeeming the Time through the subject of solitary contemplative practices. The works of Andreea Badea, Daniel Gaciu, Traian Cherecheş, Nikita Dembinski, Alexandra Sand, Ioana Sisea, Mara Ploscaru, Jared Marks, Laura Covaci and AGF HYDRA approach this matter from an artistic, philosophical and psychoanalytical perspective, each reflecting on the relationship between gestures, behaviours and the emotional regulation of one’s own internal world. Feelings of loneliness brought about by technological developments pervade our lives and the artists play an essential role in questioning the phenomena that influence the personal or collective sense of self.

When Joseph Weizenbaum presented the Eliza chatterbot at the MIT Artificial Intelligence Laboratory in 1966, he proclaimed it would demonstrate the superficiality of communication between humans and machines. Designed to simulate conversation by using a simple script gaving users a temporary illusion of understanding on the part of the program, some of ELIZA’s responses were so convincing that Weizenbaum and several others related anecdotes of users becoming emotionally attached to the program, forgetting that they were conversing with a computer. Much to his surprise, the experiment foregrounded the deeply emotional nature of human beings and our predisposition to powerful delusional thinking when the necessary tools of assessing of our emotions haven’t sufficiently developed. As our relationship with external and internal realities became increasingly mediated by new technologies, the growing phenomenon of individualization gave rise to a stock of marketable emotions, on which brands design the new social structures of our age. Customer and consumer engagement strategies construct empty customs and habits, such that the contemporary subject emerges in paradoxical fashion: extensively networked and connected, yet deeply self-directed and lonely. Traumatized experiences of emptiness and meaninglessness in the collective reality have always served artists as an impulse towards deep reflection and self-reflection.

Intended to cultivate an experience for the visitor that is full, rich and contemplative, Gesturing towards Solitude presents artists who explore their own internal psychological processes in relation to everyday life experiences through ritualic, process-oriented and medium-based practices. Immersing themselves into their interior worlds, personal and collective emotion and feeling gestures lay the ground toward a state of self-awareness. Detached from a priori spectacular narratives, their unleashed passion gestures and impulsive behaviors record profound psychological realities. Each develops alternative symbolic orders and new phantasmal scenes for an unapologetic valorization of subjective experiences. Gesturing toward solitude reflects on the artists’ unfettered and solitary contemplative effort in distilling loneliness into meaningful resources of inner power, where the artistic practice becomes an emotional development process expanding one’s state of consciousness.

On the occasion of the opening reception, Alexandra Sand will enact a ritual performance, especially designed for the space of Halucinarium. Part of her trilogy, Bread and Body Narratives, it constructs an atmosphere that practically impersonates her own state of solitude and the rewarding experience of peaceful distancing of external reality. Entitled Impasto (follow up) – symbols of becoming, the ritual performance creates an analogy between the puzzling self-defeating feeling within, the physical distress and the custom of baking bread to honor the memory of a loved person. Feelings of loneliness, combined with social anxiety and depression, can make one feel as the old self is undergoing a slow burning out, to the point of not recognizing who you once were. A special setting is framing her gestures of kneading and her visage in the process of baking, as both, she and the dough undergo a transformational change.

Date: 6th of November  |  19.00 – 22.00
On view from 6th of November 2019 until 26th of January 2020

Event partners: Unilever, Aqua Carpatica, Domenii Samburesti, Kronenbourg 1664 Blanc, Purple flowers.