Artist: Zora Stančič
The project Les onze mille verges (Eleven Thousand Rods) that artist Zora Stančič is presenting in KAPSULA, shares with Guillaume Apollinaire’s fantastic novel not only the title but also its wordplay as well as its boldness, humour and, above all, its intention. Books, catalogues and art publications of all sorts, which usually gaze at us from the shelves of the exhibition space, are now wrapped in an ordinary brown paper, which we associate with the common, the trivial and the mundane. However, regardless of its initial discrete appearance, the multifaceted confluence of dualities that characterizes the work of this restless and unique artist is echoed in this project yet again. We can consider the artist’s intervention from two perspectives – the parapornographic and the paraliteral. Their common denominator is the art form of pornographic literature as a starting point for reflection on the passionate relationship between man and art.
Reproductions of pages of coincidentally found edition of Apollinaire’s work, drawn on wrapping paper, mark the first, parapornographic perspective of the project. Like its surreal and hilarious original, the reproductions include, besides all the motives of the pornographic literature itself, the main characteristics of pornographic consumerism: obscenity as a virtue, the ever-present random exchange between people and things, emotional apathy and absolutism. This intervention of books in the exhibition space transmits the perception of pornographic literature and its consumption as a symptom of severe crisis, as a dehumanized and mechanical activity with a sole goal – to arouse sexual excitement of the reader – into the artistic field. As an ironic gesture, the artist uses this metaphor to mock the uncontrollable nature of the current cultural scene and, same as the original, restores the value of imagination in art as an expression of an individual’s freedom.
P74 Gallery, Kapsula, Ljubljana, Slovenia
17 March – 7 April 2015
Production: P74 Gallery, Ljubljana, Slovenia
Support: Municipality of Ljubljana City, Department for Culture, Ministry of Culture of the RS
Photos: Dejan Habicht. P74 Archive.