The view through the airiness, fragility and flexibility as opposed to the robustness of opaque, compact, heavy volumes. Cut and fold are used on white paper to create fragile but intricate geometric works. Weld, carve and cast volumes are heavy or strikingly colored. The antithesis is in material but in color also – color and absence of it.
Originally from Romania, the artists Anamaria and Toma, have lived in the Middle East for over seventeen years. Their work has been seen at MIND in DUCTAC, Art Nights in DIFC, at AUD with METASENTA, and other venues in Europe and Australia. With various teaching positions in the region, including the Dubai International Art Center, College of Fine Arts, Sharjah, and presently the American University in Dubai, they have helped mentor a generation of creatives in the UAE.
Anamaria studied at the National Art University in Bucharest, where she first developed her interest with the mathematical aesthetics of paper. Originally inspired by the origamic architecture of Masahiro Chatani, her early experiments involved the manipulation of paper, i.e. its mechanical properties, in order to study the effects of shadow and light across the lines and volumes. Her three-dimensional works are extensions of the geometrical shapes, using straight, curved, or even spiral lines. Over the years, her practice include drawing, painting, murals, origamic architecture, toy design, experimental architecture and teaching.
Toma earned a Ph.D. in Visual Art in 2015 from the Western University of Timisoara, and a BA in Sculpture (MA equivalent) from the National Art University in Bucharest. His practice and studio explorations are focused on three-dimensional site-specific sculpture, installation, painting and drawing. He uses both conventional and unconventional materials, and through modeling or combining them, he strives to either enhance or diminish their characteristics. This approach allows him to suggest ideas in abstract shapes. The works on display suggest changing shapes; they vary from compact, geometrical or rough organic volumes, to thin, aerated traces in space.
His work has explored many themes, such as consumerism and human behavior. Shoppers I-II-III, The Network, The Temporary Monument of the Passerby, and Mass-produced, were all designed to attract the passerby’s instant involvement and response.
In this new works, the cuboid-like shape is a modified Platonic volume. It becomes a module in an architectural structure or a setting that can be hidden or visible. Inspired by the traces of old buildings one might find in an ancient place, the installation calls to mind how these crumbling individual components now only serve as silent witnesses. However, at one time may have been the key element of a wall, or ceiling, etc. Regardless of their prior functionality, the aesthetic potential overrides the previous story.