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"Et Fiat Lux" by Špela Volčič Opens March 7 in the SACI Gallery

Špela Volčič, Fuscum subnigrum, from the series Et Fiat Lux

Courtesy of the artist and Muses: European Academy of Essences, Savigliano and Associazione Terre dei Savoia, Piedmont

Špela Volčič, Fuscum subnigrum, from the series Et Fiat Lux

Courtesy of the artist and Muses: European Academy of Essences, Savigliano and Associazione Terre dei Savoia, Piedmont

Špela Volčič, Fuscum subnigrum, from the series Et Fiat Lux

Courtesy of the artist and Muses: European Academy of Essences, Savigliano and Associazione Terre dei Savoia, Piedmont

"Et Fiat Lux" by Špela Volčič opens March 7th in the SACI Gallery.

Curated by Špela Zidar
In collaboration with the Slovenian Embassy in Rome
Partner: Dryphoto, Prato

SACI Gallery
OPENING RECEPTION: Thursday, March 7, 2019 at 6:00pm
ON VIEW: March 7 - April 3, 2019

Dryphoto Arte contemporanea
ARTIST TALK: Saturday, March 9, 2019 at 6pm

Špela Volčič’s research is focused on the tension between reality and fiction, visible and invisible, true and false. Trained as a photographer, her research has grown to include multiple mediums, including video, objects, drawing, sculpture, and installation. Volčič often investigates the sculptural practice in its form as installation art, transforming materials through the acts of folding (flowers) and baking (bread). In these processes, photography becomes both a tool and the final work. The photographs featured in the project "Et Fiat Lux" feature simulacra, perfect imitations of real flowers. The project involves the folding of over two hundred flowers into ikebanas. The meticulous compositions also echo the aesthetics of Dutch Baroque still life paintings (nature morte) from the seventeenth century, producing an initially familiar image for the viewer that actually stems from a carefully built trans-historical and trans-cultural configuration.

The first part of the project (Et at Lux) is made of nine photographs inspired by baroque still life paintings. The second part of the project (Untitled, Tesla) is a photographic installation that shows the viewer the process of ikebana making in the artist’s studio. The third part (After Et Fiat Lux) is a photographic series, which includes photos are taken with the tungsten film. The same ikebanas are composed using only the vegetal bushes (without flowers), resulting in images that are animated by a colorful glow, creating the illusion of a flower.

The subject and the result of the work rely on its ambiguity: the bouquets appear to be composed of real, fresh flowers from afar, and only by getting closer it is possible to notice they are fake. Light becomes the source of action in Volčič’s work: the principle of the movement is able to reveal the hoax where an archetypical example of beauty is constructed with plastic materials, or it makes visible an image that does not really exist.


(italiano)

La ricerca di Volčič si concentra sulla tensione tra realtà e finzione, visibile e invisibile, vero e falso. Formatasi come fotografa, la sua ricerca si sviluppa fino a includere diversi media, che vanno dal video all'oggetto, disegni, sculture e installazioni. Volčič spesso indaga la pratica scultorea nella sua forma installativa, trasformando i materiali attraverso gli atti di piegatura (fiori) e cottura (pane). In questi processi, la fotografia diventa uno strumento e il lavoro finale. Le immagini del progetto Et Fiat Lux presentano simulacri, perfette imitazioni di fiori veri. Il progetto prevede la produzione di ikebane dai fiori finti. Le composizioni meticolose riecheggiano anche l'estetica delle nature morte barocche olandesi del seicento, producendo un'immagine inizialmente familiare per lo spettatore, che in realtà deriva da una configurazione trans-storica e transculturale costruita con cura.

La prima parte del progetto (Et at Lux) è composta da 9 fotografie ispirate a nature morte barocche. La seconda parte del progetto (Untitled, Tesla) è un'installazione e rappresenta il processo di creazione di ikebane nello studio dell'artista, lo svelamento del processo artistico. La terza parte (After Et Fiat Lux) è una serie fotografica che include le foto fatte con il film di tungsteno, qui le ikebane sono composte solo da cespugli vegetali (senza fiori) e sono animate dai bagliori di luce di colori diversi, creando così l'illusione dei fiori. 

Il soggetto e il risultato del lavoro si basano sull’ambiguità: i bouquet a prima vista sembrano composti da veri fiori freschi, e solo avvicinandosi è possibile notare che sono falsi. La luce diventa la fonte d'azione nell'opera di Volčič: in grado di svelare l’inganno di un archetipo di bellezza costruito con dei materiali plastici, o di far apparire l’immagine dove in realtà non esiste.


About Špela Volčič

Špela Volčič (b. Postojna, 1984) is a visual artist based in Slovenia and Italy. After studying photography in Ljubljana, she moved to Milan in 2004 where she obtained a Diploma in Techniques and Languages of the Contemporary Photographic Project at CFP Riccardo Bauer. In 2011, she won a scholarship assigned by the Ministry of Culture in Slovenia that allowed her to continue her studies at the IUAV University of Venice, where she graduated with a degree in visual arts in 2013. After completing her studies, she was granted a one-year artist residency in Venice at the contemporary art foundation Bevilacqua La Masa, and she was later selected for a residence at VIR - Viafarini DOCVA in Milan, Italy. Since 2016, she has been officially registered as a freelancer in the field of culture assigned at the Slovenian Ministry of Culture of Republic Slovenia.


Photo credits: Špela Volčič
Graphic Design: Dania Menafra
Exhibition photos: Michaela Mau
Read more about Špela Volčič's work in the interview by Špela Zidar published by Artext.


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