From the solo exhibition 'Swornhaylinglei', December 2009 - January 2010 at Ileana Tounta gallery, Athens, Greece
'Swornhaylinglei' is not a real word. It best describes the notion of an imaginary land. A black, rectangular, box-like shell rising within the space of the gallery stands for a fantastical place,
a patch of ground, a site. Fragments align inside it to make up a narrative; an image that strains to draw boundaries against the vast expanses of our inner world.
Random episodes come together to form a mural, with the stress falling upon a sense of the tragic surfacing from amidst an absurd reality, of metaphysical anguish, of the fragility and vulnerability of existence.
The works probe the notion of the sacred, of identity, pain, power and death, referencing the writings of Kafka, Thomas More’s utopia, religious parables and the philosophy of Ludwig Wittgenstein as embodied by his work Remarks on Frazer’s ‘Golden Bough’.
The space surrounding this box-like structure functions as an antechamber, where a piece of music playing in loop,
prepares the viewer to partake in a ritual.
In Dimitris Foutris's exhibition there is an "inside" and an "outside". I Read them as a reversal: what we would expect to be the "inside", is the "outside", and vice versa. The "inside" enclaved in a recognizable and well established convention, is the imaginary place he called "Swornheylinglei". The "outside", but homogeneous infinite, is the area of consensus. In a fantastic place the episodes unfold, the reminders of violence, occasional ruptures. Outside a sound dominates the space, something between a buzzing crowd and a psalm, without further action, except for two totemic audio sculptures, the common life depositories.
Needless to say which of the two - the "inside" or the "outside" - seems more frightening.
Excerpt from text by Augustine Zenakos
Space Cadeaux, 2009
Sound piece, 25 minutes loop, speakers, cartonboxes, acrylic paint
Be just (after Κafka), 2009
Glass, wood, casein paint, rubber, dimensions variable, (private collection)
Doubting Angels Fall, 2009
Digital print on glass, gold leaf 22k, wood, cartonbox, masking tape, casein paint, glass, transparency, dimensions variable
I want to disturb the peace, 2009
Wood, Acrylic enamel paint, dimensions variable
The Landscape that overflowed my mind, part two, 2009
Wood frame, acrylic enamel paint, photograph, glass, dimensions variable, (private collection)
The Sacrifice Of Abraham, 2009
Enamel paint on ricepaper, glass, wood, casein paint, bulbs, wires, dimensions variable
Wood, gold leaf 22k, casein paint, 140Χ60 cm