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Bogdan Luca at Neubacher Shor Contemporary

Opening Celebration - Wednesday January 11th 6-9 p.m

Show Runs January 12th - February 4th 2012

Bogdan Lucaʼs practice arises out of a curiosity about the fabric of reality and the role images play in shaping its texture. There is always a theme of visual fragments brought together into mysterious scenarios that often include elements of labour, survey and exploration. Physical work comes to symbolize, in Bogdanʼs work, the mundane task of waking up and becoming conscious of the world, or having to reconstruct reality anew.

"Spolia" is a suite of large paintings that suggest such a realm coming into being "through a glass, darkly, but then face to face". The world is incomplete, always becoming, and requires stories for its completion. Oil painting becomes the perfect narrative medium because of its ability to refer both to the economy of image, and confront the viewer with its corporeal presence. An important aspect of Bogdan Lucaʼs practice is a fascination with the contemporary image culture. We are continually confronted with visual stimulation from a rich diversity of sources/media, a confrontation that requires a constant coming to terms. How do we arrange all this fragmentary and schizophrenic information into stories that make sense with our embodied experience of the world? This question relates explicitly to the entrenched culture of spoliation - plundering and building history through grafting. Carving a world requires acts of dreaming, alchemy and transfiguration - preparatory work that implies both erasure and utopian optimism.

The title refers to the integration of extant building fragments into newly constructed edifices - architectural spoils. Initiated by the emperor Constantine, this practice was an active effort to give physical form and legitimation to a new ideology by channeling desirable religious, historical or political energies contained in the despoiled buildings (often sacred). This practice was not motivated by economy since spolia were sometimes transported over great distances and their integration always required custom modifications. It was rather, a way of modifying a perceived historical trajectory: a classical revival or an emperor of uncertain lineage inserting himself into the illustrious row of glorified leaders. The same can be discussed on the personal scale of having to navigate an increasingly confusing world made dense with information that has to be sifted daily.

Bogdan Luca graduated from the Masters of Visual Studies program at the University of Toronto in 2010. Recent exhibitions include The Roving Iconist at LE Gallery and Merge at the Art Gallery of Ontario. He is currently an instructor at the OCAD University in Toronto.

Show runs January 12th - February 4th.
Gallery Hours: Wednesday- Saturday, 12-5pm, and by appointment.

5 Brock Avenue
Toronto Ontario
t 416-546-3683

Observator    1/5/2012


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