19 / 05 – 12 / 06, 2022
The Sail of Permanent Defeat is an interdisciplinary exhibition with new work by Genc Kadriu. It comprises a sound installation and seven mixed media sculptures distributed around the gallery space. Kadriu’s practice moves beyond disciplinary boundaries and works at the intersection of poetry, sculpture, sound and performance.
The first room contains Pictura Somniferum. A human voice reads notes that the artist overcome by a desire to paint took when he was exploring the tradition of abstract art. Apart from a couple of dissolving rust-encrusted cowbells with missing clappers and a beeswax femur bone modeled on the artist's own, the room is dark and laced with the lingering smell of burned bayleaf.
In the second room, the larger of the two within Bazament's cryptic gallery space, a collection of relics opens up into Genc Kadriu’s poetic cosmologies. Beeswax travels across and throughout the performed objects. It glues meanings and materials together. It transcribes forms between sculpting, casting, melting and dripping. It is an underlying metaphor of entanglement and time. Each of the works - assemblages of found, foraged and forged matter - can be accessed via its label, which is not merely informative supplement, but indispensable part in par with the rest of the components. The parts in Kadriu's works exceed the whole that they are part of, and likewise no parts are more important than the others.By Any Other Nameconsists of two arrows made with rose stem, paper-wasp nest and hawk's feather. They are suggestive of Cupid's desire or Buddha's parable on suffering, or both at the same time, whichever you choose. In theSins of My Father, what at first seem like beads from a neolithic past, turns out to be resin from the pine trees of a natural reserve threatened by urban enchroachment and property speculation. Placed within the circular enclosure, a soot snake tracing on aluminium foil hisses out the interplay between addiction, power and entrappment in things.The Sail of Permanent Escapeis biographical archeology slash regression therapy. Sail boats of walnut husks, matchsticks and bayleaves are accompanied by an artist's brief elucidation about them.
Performing objects is an act of relevance and revelation. Wooden boxes from the communist Albania, remnants of a system of controled beauty and spiritual oppression are given a new lease as reliquaries of provenance, providence and prominence. Sheepscale, subtitled The Glow of the Sunshine and the Cool of the Shade,is an ode to tapestry, photography test-strips and black sheep. Fruitful failure arises from a grinding disjunction between the real and reality, ideas and appearances, intentions and interpretations. Things get transcribed, translated and transformed.Between My Finger and My Thumb, depending on your standpoint, it could be a lovesong or a selfportrait, or conjunctively both. Here a seashell has been modeled on an Ernst Haeckel's Kunstformen der Natur, and it has been placed between lifesize moulds of the artist's finger and thumb. The InvisibleHammer andParts Without A Wholefollow the same vein. Vanity boxes containing materials whose identity and provenance is shown on their labels.
The Sail of Permanent Defeatis about the mystery of encounters and synchronicities. It is about how we are all interconnected in ways never fully revealed to us. About the creative resilience which sails defeat into the waters of learning, growth, and living with things that are not us. But it is also about the spiritual in all aspects of daily life. The material things, words, images and symbols which we must perform and manipulate so that we can connect with one another, and become close with a beyond which we cannot control.