Spleen

Spleen

SPLEEN EXHIBITION

Title: SPLEEN

Dates: 10 July till 31 August 2020

Venue: Arthall: 8, triq Agius de Soldanis, Victoria, Gozo.

– Opening hours: Monday/Tuesday: closed

Wednesday/ Thursday/Friday/Saturday: 10-13 and 17-19

Sunday: 10-12

– Website: arthallgozo.com

-Participating artists: Harrison Levi, Stiefnu De Battista, Tomas Hed.

Contact: Marta Obiols at arthallgozo@gmail.com or 77051564

DESCRIPTION

“Dissatisfied with everything, dissatisfied with myself, I long to redeem myself and to restore my pride in the silence and solitude of the night. Souls of those whom I have loved, souls of those whom I have sung, strengthen me, sustain me, keep me from the vanities of the world and its contaminating fumes”. Baudelaire, Paris Spleen.

Aware of the contradictions within ourselves, our feelings, wants, rationality, etc., we will raise the concept of “spleen” in these times when we have to close our doors, greet with gloves and smile through masks.  We resorted to this concept to present an exhibition that exposes the prison of our subjectivity, the endless repetition of a meaningless path, the ugliness of modern life with its ennui and boredom and insatiable melancholy.

Yes, there’s always room for hope, since the “spleen” is also creative and longing for new ways of expressing, communicating and reaching out again to others. It’s the eve of the change.

PARTICIPATING ARTISTS

This is a collective exhibition by Harrison Levi, Stiefnu De Battista and Tomas Hed. It consists of a combination of paintings and sculptures.

HARRISON LEVI hails from South Africa, by way of England (where he lived for nearly two decades). He currently resides on Gozo, but it’s really the cross-pollination of the profuse and fecund ecosystems of Johannesburg & London that inform his work.

He has always had a fascination with the classic science fiction scenario of humans versus robots at the nadir of the apocalypse, which he has always understood to mean the clash of heart versus head, emotion versus intellect, feminine versus masculine, humanity versus technology… This has always been the crux of his work, bursting with provocative colours and his penchant for symbols, as he wanders through a landscape littered with memories and regrets, and a melancholic hope for something better.

The biggest impact on his artwork was made by Cy Twombly, Paula Rego, Philip Guston, Fernando Pessoa, Clarise Lispector, Curtis Mayfield, George Clinton, and Tom Waits.

STIEFNU DE BATTISTA was born in Malta in 1985. He studied at the De La Salle School of Art in Valletta under the tuition of Michael Mifsud and later on, he continued his studies at the Salvatore Dimech, School for Art and Crafts (Targa Gap) Mosta, Malta. He subsequently attended lessons under the tuition of renowned artist, Twanny Darmanin.

He successfully completed the First Diploma course in Art and Design and subsequently passed the National Diploma in Design Crafts with a Distinction, under the guidance of Maltese ceramist George Muscat. He successfully obtained the BTEC Higher National Diploma in 3D Design / Ceramics at the MCAST Institute of Art and Design, Malta.

In 2006, he completed a one-year course in Fine Arts at the Malta School of Art under the tuition of Mr Alfred Caruana Ruggier.

In 2007, Stefan was declared winner of a ceramics competition launched as part of the Medpot Project promoted by the Comune Di Sciacca in Sicily, and received a one-month scholarship in Sciacca.

After his experience in Sicily during his Medpot scholarship, Stiefnu is presently working on commissions and is developing his work through an experimental and contemporary approach.

TOMAS HED originally from Sweden, lives in Gozo, where he lets his imagination and creativity go wild. Here he has found his place to exploit his talents: composing music, writing and, of course, painting. He worked for many years as an Art Director in Stockholm, having his own studio in Gamla Stan, the old part of the city. As a seeking youth Tomas developed in an artistic atmosphere, living in a community with other artists. Tomas’ father was an artist too; therefore paint and canvases have always been around him.

Always polemical, provocative and with strong opinions, it’s impossible to be indifferent to his creations. The spirit of his art is inspired by an indomitable character, with a special obsession for challenging values, or “bubbles” as he calls them, of our daily life.

DATES AND CONTACT

From 10 July 2020 to 31 August 2020.

Due to the uncertain circumstances we will avoid for now an opening night. However, the artists and the gallerist, apart from the opening hours of the gallery, will be available by appointment. For more information contact Marta Obiols at arthallgozo@gmail.com or 77051564.

Opening hours: From Wednesday to Saturday from 10-13 and 17-19; Sunday from 10-12.

Visit: arthallgozo.com or https://www.facebook.com/ArtHallGozo

APPENDIX

Some more texts from Baudelaire, Poem X, Paris Spleen.

AT LAST! I am alone! Nothing can be heard but the rumbling of a few belated and weary cabs. For a few hours at least silence will be ours, if not sleep. At last! The tyranny of the human face has disappeared, and now there will be no one but myself to make me suffer”.

“At last! I am allowed to relax in a bath of darkness! First a double turn of the key in the lock. This turn of the key will, it seems to me, increase my solitude and strengthen the barricades that, for the moment, separate me from the world”.

“Horrible life! Horrible city! (…) bowed to twenty or more persons of whom fifteen were unknown to me; distributed hand shakes in about the same proportion without having first taken the precaution of buying gloves”.

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