My work unfolds in a variety of media. By merging multiple, often seemingly incompatible worlds into a new territory, I stage scenes in between recognition and alienation; experiential environments in which fiction and reality meet and emerge little by little. My practice takes the form of installations, sculptural objects, deconstructed sets, and conceptual configurations that are always linked to an experienced physical and emotional reality with spaces and objects. Thematically, I investigate heterotopias, transitional/liminal spaces and paradoxical topologies which incorporate shifting dualities: inside-outside, near-far, familiar-uncanny, rational-transcendent, rigid-fragile, real-illusional. I am drawn to abstract poetic spatial arrangements that appear as breaking points within daily surroundings, mostly having no artistic intention, yet seeming in their construction complete and significant; compositions moulded with a very strong potential of becoming "other" once disconnected from their environment. I remove these from their context, transform, re-place, and reinterpret them. By presenting them in a new frame, I allow them to narrate alternative potentialities in relation to their very existence. Symbols, memory, and theoretical discourses play a key role in my praxis. They appear in my work in the form of architectural models, sculptures, and found objects that merge together with archive and found images, drawings, devices, and other systems. I select these elements for their function as reference, as a poetic and abstract metaphor, or as a vehicle to exploit a spatial discourse. I reproduce them repeatedly, allowing their meaning to shift and take on new qualities, in order to enhance them in my artistic vocabulary and conceptual system. Once I enter a new space, I install, connect, overlay, and disperse these different "realities" and let them enter into a conversation with the surroundings and the "otherness", transcending the spatial elements as well as the space itself. The immersive environments are at times fragile and contemplative; at others, the organisation of the space is compulsive, full, and ordered, yet incorporating hidden paradoxes, like a puzzle to be solved. The components are vanishing points of a fiction, the result of an intuitive yet analytical process. The content is organised in linked metaphors, aiming at first for a sense of awkwardness in the visitor, who is captured in a mise-en-scene. Boundaries among objects and spaces then dissolve, and possible interpretation becomes multifaceted. Known juxtaposes to imaginary, familiar and unknown fuse.
Copyright 2013-2018, Athanasios Kanakis