SANCTIMONIOUS
with works by Mariandrie Chrysostomou
May 25 - June 1st

Sanctimonious _ Phoenix Athens.jpg

Sanctimonious is about both identifying and resisting against imposed attitudes of superiority. In this case, the self is reluctant to the influence of these forces, but is not impenetrable. What is left is something that is in between everything and nothing - a journey in search of identity. The works combine softness and heaviness to reveal female sensitivity, while questioning male-dominated narrative. Color, composition and scale are carefully considered as the works approach both contemporary form and modern narrative. Through her practice, Mariandrie Chrysostomou asks the questions: what spaces do female artists occupy? What practices, mediums, and colors are considered feminine? What constitutes a female voice, and in what ways is this articulated? 

 

The knitted sculpture There are more than a thousand ways to say something juxtaposes a phallic form created with stereotypically feminine colors. The work flows within the space like an etheric creature, an autonomous organism. The interplay between the heaviness of the material and the subtle nature of this form gives it enhanced meaning. The self-titled Sanctimonious is an embroidered quote on a delicate fabric that insinuates a didactic statement. Although the text derives from something personal, it is fueled by layered interpretations that span social, political, and religious connotations. This piece, which Initially derives from a personal mansplaining input also underlines political collision between Greek ethnicity and Cypriot identity. 

The stitched series Something in between reexamines painting through craft, as a way to retrace history and memory, while triggering new areas of thinking.

 

In effect, there are more than a thousand ways to look at something and far more ways to actually say something. In this case, the works are an attempt to articulate the message in a diplomatic manner.  The works boldly transfer their message in a way that is both nuanced yet demanding of our attention. Politics camouflaged by beauty.  A beauty that possesses a nature that is childlike, almost naive. A beauty that seemed to be lost, but is somehow rediscovered.