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Mimefield

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Solo Show by Mark Justiniani at the Tin-aw Booth in Art Fair Philippines

Mark Justiniani conjures our journey through Mimefield in exacting beauty and thoughtful recourse. He presents a mesmeric expanse of space wherein objects and figures, indeed entire worlds multiply and fragment. The passage he plots puts forth a magical promise, that of elusive destination, an experience that can only be anchored to the ephemeral and the passing.

Mimefield’s horizons are visible yet fissured by the trick of mirror and light. Vision is irresistibly reined to dark void. Depths and surface are rendered through the artifice of reflection. Pillars for instance evoke a headlong dive into a pit, such when one peers into a dried-out well, tilts way too much and unexpectedly falls. We imagine the dark descent as horrific and irreversible. Justiniani’s caverns however, endow the imagining a mysterious beckoning perhaps because we realize the pit’s bottom is flat surface, a reflection fractured countless times.

The artist’s fascination with the limits of surface, vision’s tenuous nature, and metamorphosing forms can be traced to his 2011 exhibition Phantom Limb. In this medley of spectres, we realize ourselves fragmented and multiplied various ways – bodies peering into miniature metaphors of life, plunging into, yet straining against mirrored boundaries. Mirrors reflect, distort, and crop the world. Justiniani’s mastery of its reflective surface allows us to glimpse infinity and boundary fused into each other. In Mimefield as in Phantom Limb, we grasp how it is to encounter in the flimsiest sliver of time, the hope embodied by the eternal and the inevitable that is the burden of endings. The artist places us within indeterminate space where we become ether floating in iridescent pool of glowing light. In this sojourn, destination is farthest from our thoughts seized as we are by the magic of being somewhere yet nowhere, a place that haunts both our fears and dreams.

The artist can be likened to Portuguese novelist’s Jose Saramago’s Cipriano Algor whose inquisitiveness led him to the cave underneath their apartment complex. In that dimly lit cavern, he discovers horrendous proof of past cruelties – three pairs of seated skeletons of men and women kept upright by noose around their necks. While the Center’s administration transforms the cave’s remains into yet another spectacle, Cipriano with conviction leaves the complex to return to his village.

Mark Justiniani through relentless probing and enthralling expression reveals spectral facets of our worlds, mirages that trick the eye and sometimes, poison the heart. Jose Saramago condenses this predicament in resonant clarity; “the human soul is a poisoned well of contradictions”. Justiniani plunges headlong and resurfaces these teeming inconsistencies in his construction of a spectral landscape that shrouds yet escapes us all the same.

Mimefield can be viewed at the Tin-aw Booth, Booth 21 of the Art Fair from February 7 until February 10. The exhibition transfers to Tin-aw Art Gallery’s space at the Upper Ground Floor of Somerset Olympia Building, Makati Avenue starting 15 February. It will be on view until 1 March 2013. The gallery hosts an artist’s talk during the exhibition’s opening on February 15 at 6PM. 

For more information contact gallery staff at info@tin-aw.com and (+632) 892.75.22. 

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