Show Us What You’re Made Of! The Ingram Collection
This exhibition will juxtapose the old with the new, and show how creative and resourceful artists can be when embarking on the journey to originality. Modern British heavyweights such as Anthony Caro, Lynn Chadwick and Reg Butler will be contrasted with emerging and recently established artists, including Sophie Ryder, Sarah Tse, Olympia Polymeni and Emma Woffenden. Whether the artists are using everyday objects, new technologies or revolutionary materials, the exhibition will explore the physical qualities of the artworks, the ideas that stimulated them and the secrets behind their creation.
muse, of the rave of Greek Trash, son of Deep Trash,
brought countless thrills upon the Londonians…’
Homer, The Queeriad
Get the feathers out and roll in the wax… the long-awaited Deep Trash
exhibition-cum-performance club night is back in 2016 with an event entirely
dedicated to Hellenic cultures, myths and contemporary politics across art,
videos, performance and music for your Zorba feet!
your Herculean guns, sons, and catamite funs down to the Working Men’s Club. Greek Trash
demands the rejoining of other halves, the taking of Olympus, and refugee solidarity across borders. GREEK TRASH is
here to destabilise your holiday plans and bring you a sizzling taste of all
things Greek under London’s grey skies.
subversive bouzoukia, the bubbly birthing of Aphrodite, camp Cavafy readings, a
‘coming out as an octopus’, contemporary Medusas, queer & fluo post-punk Easter
actions, Herculean and Androgyne bodies, a ‘Greek Crisis Cunt Cinema’, and our VERY
SPECIAL guest star from Athens: ANNA GOULA!
MUSIC: A Man To Pet
(Host) / Panos Z (HOMO SUPERIOR)
An eclectic mix of queer
artists and icons across the decades (from Dusty Springfield and Ramones to
Peaches and Grimes), with a “let’s have a tzatziki” pop & disco finale! A
selection of Greek tracks will make your night even more… OPA!
LIVE PERFORMANCES: 34es / A Man To Pet / Anna Goula (feat. PanicLab)
/ Antonis Sideras / Catherine Elsen
/ Fenia Kotsopoulou (feat. Apollvon S Delios) / Queens of the Underworld / Stephen Eyre / Zoe Czavda
VIDEOS:Anna Maria Pinaka / Baxx Vladimir / Danai Avgeri + Marilena Gatsiou + Maria Mitsopoulou +
Laura Eftychia Papachristo / Ernesto Sarezale
/ Evangelos Papadakis / Georges Jacotey / HeArt Attack Films / Ian Balzan
Dorizas / Kassiani Kappelos / Mary Zygouri / Olympia Polymeni /Olga Guse
ARTWORKS: Christina Koutsolioutsou / FYTA / Ilias Klis / Myrto Makridou
/ Studio Prokopiou / Tal Navon / Thalia Galanopoulou / THAVMA
▪Deep Trash is the only regular
exhibition-cum-performance-club-night promoting queer and feminist arts from
all disciplines taking place in London.
▪Deep Trash remains a fundraiser night for the
activities of CUNTemporary and Archivio Queer Italia. Nevertheless, we ensure
that artistic expenses are covered.
▪Deep Trash launches a specific open call before each
event for a fairer artistic participation and selection. The works and artists
accepted will be consistent with the intersections of feminist-queer practice.
▪Deep Trash adopts an inclusive political stance, with
zero tolerance for discrimination of any sort.
▪Deep Trash aims at showcasing the work of both
emerging and established practitioners in order to create an intersectional,
intergenerational and transcultural dialogue.
▪Deep Trash is especially committed to promoting
performance art in order to encourage and strengthen research within current
▪Deep Trash provides a safe space where works of a
difficult and challenging nature can be presented, documented, discussed,
enjoyed and reviewed.
▪Deep Trash understands sex as an inextricable part of
what we do, who we are and where we come from. We support art and politics
which are organized around sex. That is, the deprivatization of sex, the
decriminalization of sex work, visible non-normative sexualities and non-binary
gender identities, the end of sexual violence and the promotion of consensual
▪Deep Trash insists that as artists and audiences, we
need more safe and inclusive spaces where people can come together to create,
share, experience, discuss, be affected, be flirted, stimulated, challenged and
most importantly, EMPOWERED.
Danae's Lovers is an independent short film directed by Castro, the founder of Almita Films, starring Andreas Phylactou, Mar Del Corral, Maddi Ridley, and Ulysses Cardoso. I did the Set Design of the film and I am very happy to share the following images.
Detail from 10 White Kilos by Olympia Polymeni, plasticine, Ort Gallery, 2012
Abstract from my dissertation MA CSM, 2010, London
time I visited Tate Modern I was more than excited to see all the masterpieces
in the permanent collection. When I came across Auguste Rodin’s The Kiss I spent all my time looking at
The marble sculpture was mounted on a base
and the real thing had nothing to do with the reproductions I was familiar
with. It was like a magnet and its energy was captivating; I could not take my
eyes off it and leave the room. Suddenly, it dawned on me that I could not see the girl kissing. I started walking
around the sculpture trying different points of view, but I was trying in vain.
I could not see her kissing unless I was permitted to climb on the sculpture or
bend and spirally twist my body to peep at the couple’s kiss. But is sculpture
made to be viewed in this way? The way it was presented, mounted on that base,
seemed to me to justify more the title HisKiss than The Kiss. I started wondering if this was the intention of the
artist or if the Tate people never thought about it.
It is hard to answer the above question,
but maybe that is not the point. Maybe it is more interesting to pose the
question why we see what we see and what we understand of what we see.
Rodin’s approach to sculpting women was a
homage to them and their bodies. His intention was not to present them just
submitting to men but as full partners in ardour (The Kiss, Rodin). Perhaps
what my eyes reported was not true. Or perhaps my senses revealed something
that my mind had not thought before.
says Schopenhauer, is of feminine nature: it can give only after it has
received. Without information on what is going on in time and space the brain
cannot work (Arnheim, 1969, p.1).
The above extract belongs to Rudolf Arnheim
(Professor Emeritus of Psychology of Art at Harvard) and is the first paragraph
of his book Visual Thinking (1969). Even from its title the book makes a
provocative statement: that our eyes produce thought. He suggests that
perception is not passive but active: it gathers types of things called
concepts and uses them to produce thought; and inversely, the mind has
something to think with, if the material of the senses is still present. Arnheim’s claim is radical because in theory
the mind is supposed to function in two separate ways in order to cope with the
world: it must gather information and it must process it. He argues that in
practice this is not the case, although
the distinction between the mind and the senses persisted through
history (Arnheim, 1969).
thinkers were the first who dealt with the problem. At early stages, the human
mind used to interpret psychological phenomena as physical things or events.
Thus the split between the senses and the mind was first located not in the
mind but in the outside world. It was the world which was divided into order
and chaos, or else, into heaven and earth. Parmenides mistrusted the senses,
which reported change in the world, and he called for the reason to put things
in order and establish the truth. Sophists relied on the unreliability of the
senses to support their skepticism: a stick dipped into the water looked
broken, a distant object looked small. This was the beginning of subjectivity.
A distinction between the outside world and the perception of it was
established. In other words, it was the distinction between the physical and
the mental. It was the beginning of psychology (Arnheim, 1969).
Greeks were aware of the problems this
distinction created but were subtle enough not to condemn the senses. The
criterion for the wise use of the senses was reasoning. For Heraclitus the
“barbarian souls” cannot interpret the senses and Democritus warned the mind:
‘Wretched mind, do you, who get your evidence from us, yet try to overthrow us?
Our overthrow will be your downfall.’ Plato and Aristotle developed a more
complex attitude. Plato distrusted direct perception and Aristotle claimed that
an object was real through its true, lasting nature and not through its
changeable properties. However, they never forgot that vision is the first and
final source of wisdom, as it is reflected in Aristotle’s words: ‘the soul
never thinks without an image’ (Arnheim, 1969).
Arnheim continues his argument: Cognitive
operations such as active exploration, selection, grasping of essentials,
simplification, abstraction, analysis and synthesis, completion, correction,
comparison, problem solving, combining, separating and putting in context are
not privileges of the mind above and beyond perception, but essential elements of
perception itself. ‘Visual perception is visual thinking’ (Arnheim, 1969,
When I saw The Kiss I opened my eyes and I found my myself surrounded by the
given world: the Gallery, the walls, the works of arts, the visitors, the
sculpture and my body. All these objects were given to my eyes, they resemble
the retinal projection with me having done nothing to produce them. But that
given world was only the scene on which the perception took place. Through that
world I directed my glance, I focused on this particular sculpture scanning
details; I explored the relations of the two heads kissing each other. This
active performance of the gaze is called visual perception (Arnheim, 1969).
Therefore, vision is selective. An object
may be selected for attention because it stands out of the rest of the visual
world and/or because it responds to what the observer needs to see. The reason
why our vision operates selectively stems from our need to survive as species
(Arnheim, 1969). This fact may apply not only to the history of our evolution,
but also to our everyday life. Survival explains our visual choices.
Another example of how vision operates is
its ability to complete the incomplete: a box, partly covered by a vase, is seen as a complete cube partly hidden
(Arnheim, 1969). Similarly, a woman’s head overlapped by a man’s head while
they are kissing is seen kissing him
as well. The observer completes the fragment he sees not because of previous
knowledge of the object or the action, but because this operation takes place
within perception itself.
Also, when the angle of a three-dimensional
object changes this object seems to be transformed. Despite these
transformations the object is perceived having a stable shape. A specific
aspect of the object contains renvois,
references, which suggest the subsequent ones. This is another application of
our ability to complete the incomplete with our eyes. (Arnheim, 1969). Rodin’s The Kiss relies on renvois to emphasize the continuous roundness of shapes and the
presentation of serpent-like figures. Our eyes actually see what the artist does not
show us directly from a particular point of view.
Moreover, to see means to see in context.
We see objects in relation to each other. These relations appear either in
terms of contrast or similarity and affect strongly the way we perceive the
objects. For example, under the pressure of contrast a pure red colour next to
a pure yellow may turn purplish while the yellow becomes greenish. Similarly,
juxtaposed shapes or objects sacrifice their identity in order to relate as a
whole. Fittingness, the matching of things pointing to a whole, is an example
of seeing things in terms of similarity (Arnheim, 1969):
fits concavity, the key fits the keyhole, and in the fable told by Aristophanes
the male and the female yearn to restore the spherical wholeness of the
original human body (Arnheim, 1969, p.65).
Looking at a work of art is the strongest
experience of active exploration of shape and visual order which goes on when
we use our eyes. When the exploration is successful the work of art reveals its
meaning to the viewer (Arnheim, 1969). With TheKiss the artist abstracts an action
in a timeless and single representation, and by giving to the work its title he
makes an absolute statement of what a kiss is. Using titles means using
language and language is more open to individual interpretations. We can project
our personal experience to the title. When it comes to images, though, things
and ideas appear in a more specific way. The statue itself is much less
adaptable to our subjectivity than the words of its title. When art is high and
successful to such a degree as in Rodin’s case, we are seduced and engaged. We
willingly surrender to the artist’s intentions and adjust ourselves to what we
see: We see the essence of the kiss and in conjunction with the title our subjectivity
fits to it as a glove: what I think a
kiss is is Rodin’s The Kiss. On the
contrary, when a piece is unsuccessful we deny following it. The sculpture
which shares the same title as Rodin’s masterpiece, The Kiss in Kings Cross St. Pancras Station is a mere anecdote of
the love story.
above analysis is an attempt to explain why Rodin’s The Kiss is seen “as such”. But why did I see a man kissing a woman
and not thekiss? With this question we come closer to the observer’s role when
we wrestle with vision.
Maybe I was right. Maybe the sculpture had
not been made to be viewed the way it was presented. An object is visually
endowed with its function. For example, a bridge is perceived as something to
be walked over. Works of art were made for particular purposes and places. Being
demonstrated in museums and galleries the artworks are deprived from their
initial function which forms their identity. They are regarded as pure shapes
and this can change their appearance dramatically (Arnheim, 1969).
A contemporary viewer sees things
differently from one who admired the same piece of art in the past. Which
features are grasped depends not only on the stimuli, but also on the observer.
The cultural background, training, knowledge, expectations, wishes, and fears
of the observer shape his vision. Memory is a crucial factor as well. Every
time a perceptual act takes place, it performs a similar act which was
performed in the past and survived in memory. The experiences of the present
mix with the experiences of the past and precondition the future ones (Arnheim,
Maybe I was deceived by my eyes then. The
fact that I come from a cultural background that patriarchy is persistent made
me see the woman submitting to the man’s kiss. Maybe I imagined Rodin as a very
dominant figure because at the same time I was reading Camille Claudel’s
biography; ‘Only him could this!’ was my first thought when I realised that
there was no point of view from which I could see the girl kissing. Or maybe
all these reasons helped me to discover something that was already there but
remained unnoticed. Arnheim claims that the feat of extracting a particular
element from a pattern shows that intelligence work in perception itself. In
this case, visual thinking is the ability to wrest a hidden feature or disguised
relation from an adverse context.
Arnheim’s approach derives from Gestalt
psychology according to which perception grasps generic structural features
spontaneously. Another thinker with the same starting point is Merleau-Ponty.
His philosophy questions the existence of an absolute observer. The world of
perception, in other words the world that is revealed to our senses, is not the
world we think we know, but a delusion. The physics of relativity confirms that
an absolute and final objectivity does not exist. Modern art, philosophy and
psychology point to the fact that we relate to space not as a pure disembodied
subject to a distant object but rather as a being that lives in this place; we
live in space not as a mind and a body, but rather as a mind with a body and we can see the truth of
things because our body is embedded in those things. We have access to the
external objects through our body. In this sense, it is impossible to separate
things from the way they appear because the way they appear is connected with
our body. In other words, it is impossible to separate things from our body
because it is impossible to separate us from our body. Human beings connected
with their bodies and their bodies connected with things, connected with the world
A work of art is something we perceive.
Thus it is similar to the object of perception: it is in its nature to be seen
and not to be analysed. The direct perceptual experience cannot be substituted
by any definition and discussion of this experience, however, valuable that may
be afterwards (Merleau-Ponty, 1948). The reason is obvious since we do not
consist of mind plus body; it is not our body that does the perception and it
is not our mind that proceeds it. We are mind with body, which means that our
body not only perceives but understands as well. If we use the word senses or
eyes instead of the word body we come to our starting point again: visual
thinking. For Merleau-Ponty, I would paraphrase, it is body thinking.
It was my
body that responded to The Kiss and
the word body embraces everything that has to do with subjectivity. My body actually responded to the view
of two other bodies, a male and female kissing. To be more exact it was a
representation of the two bodies kissing. But does the representation of
relationships between sexes reflect any aspect of reality?
Kate Millett offers a radical answer by
starting her book Sexual Politics
(1970) with an extract taken from Henry Miller’s Sexus which describes colourfully the sexual intercourse between a
man and a woman. Millett puts coitus, as described in literature and history,
under the microscope of her analysis showing that sexual activity does not take
place in a vacuum but in a larger context of human affairs. Sex serves as
a model of sexual politics meaning that
there is a great step to be made: the transition from these scenes of intimacy
to a political context. She defines the term politics not as a world of
meetings and political parties but as power-structured relationships by which
one group of persons is controlled by another. This radical step leads to
another one, even more radical: to a theory of patriarchy.
With her ‘notes’ (Millett, 1970, p.24), as
she calls her book which became a world bestseller, she makes an attempt to
prove that sex is a status category with political implications. Millett
demonstrates how and why the structures of patriarchy prevailed in our
civilization and how patriarchy is reflected in literature.
One of the most unfortunate aspects of
civilization is the extent to which learning and scientific interest are so
deeply affected by the culture in which such study is done (Millett, 1970,
It could be said then that The Kiss is a sculpture which reflects
the structures of patriarchy. The reason why we cannot see that is because we
already see and understand our world in terms of these structures of
Seeing out of the context, or seeing what
other people may not see can be misunderstood. Whether perceiving a work of art
as I did is a narrow approach triggered by a hidden detail or by the general
grasping of it, or whether it is a subjective reading of my body with my mind, or whether it was only a misunderstanding, it was an adventure to figure it out.