Athina Ioannou

Centre d'art le Lait
Castres (FR), 2009

Curator Jackie Ruth Mayer


Athina Ioannous’ pictures are confusingly simple; they are plunged into nothing but oil, which, by drying up, is penetrating the reticulated tissue. But tissue and textile do not serve as sustainers, making other textiles and veils visible; they do not indicate anything, they represent nothing. These pictures embody the equal value of canvas, textile and surface. A seemingly paradoxical state of facts, as far as it is obviously, that both of them, sustainers and ground, enter a claim for the pictures surface.

The last process of painting might be the first one. The pictures uppermost coat, that one, which is painted at the very last, is neither smooth nor level, nor monotonous; it is shining, is full of marks, imprints, impressions, scintillating and simple. Black vertical strokes of graphite are entered into it, traversing every painting from top to bottom. Every stroke is an isolated case, similar to each other, but always deviating. There is no repetition, but an accumulation of singular cases. The strokes are running through both sides of the textile, which has been turned again and again, converting bottom to front and vice versa. As if it were a matter of touching the sustainers, ere any form comes into being or even a single tone is coated, they accompany, like a tattoo is attending the skin, as gloomy insignia the growing of the pictures. Running vertically through the textile and from its left to its right, they reconnoitre and support its oil-soaked tissue. With these strokes the act of drawing leaves as a residue its fragile inscription on the picture. Appearing timeless and without any beginning or ending, this inscriptiondoes not lead to any point and will never come to any destination. There is no point of ending, not even any sections. The singular case articulates itself within this inscription as a not reducible, unrepeatable but simple and continuous gesture.

View images
View images