Alkatraz Gallery kindly invites you to the opening of the exhibition FRONT(A), by Goran Škofić, on Tuesday, 20th August 2013, at 8pm, at Alkatraz Gallery. The project was carried out in collaboration with Studentski centar Gallery, Zagreb, Croatia and curated by Ksenija Baronica.
Manipulations in an Isolated Space: Branka Benčić
At his solo exhibition in the Alkatraz Gallery, Goran Škofić, one of the most interesting video-artists of a younger generation in Croatia, exhibits his audio-video installation, as a continuation of his artistic explorations from the series of works at his last solo exhibition White. In this project he uses some of the elements from the previous series of works and deals with them in a visual, conceptual and spatial sense. In a wider context, these elements are also a continuation of his explorations from earlier works, like the series of works Corpus. These include self-representation, positioning and multiplication of his own character, repetition, manipulation, absurd and a game. However, Front(a) brings about somewhat different relations. This exhibition is more focused on the exhibition space and perception of the observer. In this work, my wish was to put a video work in a spatial context and thus play with the observer’s perception and contrast of spatial relations; big-small, Goran points out.
Ambience, spatial organization of the video projection, and especially its audio elements, are the key elements of the new work, in which the artist focuses on the intensity of the experience. The formative elements can be found in crossing the visual borders and frame of the artwork, the ones relating to the spatial disposition, as well as the more active incorporation of sound as an important formative element. More attention is devoted to sound in Front(a). Sound is not merely something that accompanies the projected images, but it has a more important role in forming an invisible sensory volume of the space of the work, audio-visual environment experienced as a unit.
White is the phase in my work that describes experimenting with a pure naked body (without the influence of the background), claims Goran Škofić. In this work as well, Škofić reaches for an already tested method of using his own character. By using black and white image and hybrid sound, we follow the images of army and soldiers, row, parade, images that flow continuously, passing through the frame, representing a mass of uniform bodies as a representation of power. Artist’s body is multiplied, dressed in a conventional dark suit of a serious yuppie, without some specific identity characteristics. The work shows an ordinary man who becomes a sort of corporation by multiplying, continues the author.
One character, then two, then the whole army marching as a river of multiplied characters, and their permutation, are the basic model that constitutes the action. Those series of repetitive monotonous actions with small transformations take place within a simple geometry of the frame. Action takes place on the white rectangular background. Camera is fixed above the protagonist, from bird’s eye view, from above, giving an overall view, in which the man, isolated from the environment, outside the context of reality, is represented as a graphic symbol on an idle background in a hybrid time. Signs of an objective world have been abolished in order to emphasize the repetitive action. Audio-visual record emphasizes this repetitiveness of individual movements and action in general. We use it to see the artificiality of the scene, its continuous character, as the image of the world devoid of coordinates of reality.
Goran Škofić (1979, Pula, HR) graduated from the Academy of Fine Arts in Split (Croatia), Film and Video department. He lives and works in Zagreb (Croatia). Škofić's works consist of photo and video collage, spatial installations,electronic manipulated images, the recorded performance, film and sound elements. In recent works Škofić makes use of his own body - as a medium to explore the human, social body.
The artist in his works explores the position of the individual in a variety of social spheres of contemporary life. His work is based on extracting various sequences from real-life and by placing them into a new context through image manipulation, he offers a surreal situation as a legitimate one. Social control, manipulation, lack of authority, social aspects and absurdities of everyday life are constant topics of his work, often interpreted through a humorous form.
Škofić has exhibited in numerous international festivals, galleries, museums and biennials. In 2009, he was the recipient of the Radoslav Putar Award as the best Croatian artist under 35-years-old. He received several fellowships and he has been on art residencies in Europe, North and South America.
Photography of the exhibtion opening by: Sunčan Stone