Almost nothing à Paréidolie
For Paréidolie 2016, Analix Forever proposes a minimalist exhibition of two artists: Pavlos Nikolakopoulos (Greece) and Eszter Szabó (Hungary).
Pavlos Nikolakopoulos, committed artist as he is, has long worked on what he calls “the dense narration”. These highly charged works are packed with political theories, literary references, and slogans. This was at the very beginning of the year 2010. But in 2012, while “the terrorism of destruction flourishes” in Greece, Nikolakopoulos, pursuing the same train of thought, began to explore the dynamic equilibrium of desire, creating empty spaces in order to allow contemplation over critical examination. All narrative disappeared. White predominates appeared. Almost nothing. The spectator is invited to enrich the work by the meaning that he or she gives to it, and no longer by the interpretation of the narrative. Emotion reveals itself, pure, behind the cutting white, in forms even more powerful in that they tend to disappear: they, too, create a space for a new conceptual approach. Nikolakopoulos’ latest works reveal a formal minimalism that is even more poignant, charged with political questionings that are heavy with meaning.
Eszter Szabó, currently shown at Fresnoy, explores the “little nothings” of everyday life. In the sociopolitical life of a post-communist country like her own, where the current situation is, in her opinion, worrisome, she searches and collects demonstrations of public opinion in their greatest simplicity. Szabó stops herself, observing and taking the time to detect the smallest details, so familiar that they become invisible. Szabó then revives these details in her small drawings, where fictional characters are inspired by real individuals met, listened to, photographed, filmed and loved in the street by the artist. Eszter Szabó reveals their “essence”, showing us vulnerability, inertia, weariness, indifference, malice, as well as solidarity and empathy—the comprehension of “worldly things”. The greatest power of Sazbó (expressed in small format, without emphasis and in water color) is her ability to lead us to an identification with the subjects of her wonder, an identification that is often troubling.
The minimalism of Pavlos Nikolakopoulos and Eszter Szabó is an invitation to contemplation, leading us to the question: how do we live? What do we really need? Almost nothing: fullness.