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Into Wonderland: Review of Sanja Hurem's "Metamorphosis"



Screening space and part of the photo series


A ghost town named Vlacháta on the island Kefalonia, off the west coast of Greece.  Earth, shrubs, rocks, rubble, and the fossils of a community.  Old Vlacháta now.  Paleá Vlacháta.  Like referring to a person who has passed on. Joseph.  Joseph, deceased.  A town that used to be alive now deserted and emptied.

But, all things in life trace circles.

So, it lives again.  

A power generator betrays the surprise in store.  The pathways lay ahead, uneven, yet defined by the town-planning of this once hustle-and-bustling place.  By now the moon in its first quarter, shines frozen and erect over what's taking place here.  The pact between the trees and the ruins is celebrated in the first segment of this artistic endeavor.  An installation piece: Two round twig balls bound in barrel rings and speech coming out of one of them.  A moment - in terms of space and objects- where the surroundings are appreciated as something other than their catalogue identity.  Opportunity in the instance of re-appreciating what you see.

But, that is only one section of this wide and polymorphous installation.  By carefully taking steps around the ghost-village paths, the visitor unveils the installation further.  Shells of homes, ruins lit and photos exhibited on the walls.  Night closes in and the trail of lights ushers me to the largest ruin of the village.  Roof missing, baby olive trees growing on the ground.  Granddad trees standing-by, watching.  The video projection is very alluring.  Clear and organic in subject matter.  Girl.  Girl in white.  Water.  Lake in a cave. Lake named Melissani.  The video is tracked by sound and speech.  The words spoken paint the picture a little more. The colour of this female voice, or the lack of emotion in it, keep adding to the experience.

The feeling the spectator gets is that of acute reception.  Softness of the air on the skin as a video-art projection takes place outdoors in the Greek summer night.  Stars studding the darkness overhead, and, ...the art. Metamorphosis.  Human to Goddess. Space to Moment.  From being the dream, to becoming the dreamer.  

A review of Sanja Hurem's "Metamorphosis" by Maria Demas (Artist and Curator, MA)

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