TestDrive, Nicosia, Cyprus
11 - 26 April 2019
Descending into the dark and uninhabited basement of DriveDrive, one will immediately be confronted by the absently virtual appearance of a swarm of sculptural #emotional makings created by Adonis Archontides. In preparation for this (almost palpable) debut at TestDrive, Archontides exercises #perseverance through a period of intense #rediscovery and #existentialdread.
Emotional Sculptures is a continuation of the artists’ #criticallyacclaimed solo exhibition. This praise was casually greeted by the forceful nature of supply and demand economics within late stage #capitalism. #Stressed, #depressed but always #dressed2impress in tight and revealing yoga pants, Archontides embarks on a journey of understanding the vastly non-articulated and sceptical uncertainties of the universe. Unsurprisingly, this scepticism of humanity’s finitude revealed the artists’ shortcomings through a period of multiple existential crises and nervous breakdowns revealing the bipolar binary between #meditation and #expectation.
Archontides previously suffered unlimited slow, time consuming and painful deaths all for the sake of art through the durational performances of Sulsul! Plerg Majah Bliff? (Hello! Can I do something else please?), Za Woka Geneva (I think you are hot) and Ya Gotta Wob’ere! Ya Gotta Wob’ere! (Don’t give up! Keep trying!). Strangely, the artist, even though feeling unbelievably rejuvenated following each death, was #mentally #exhausted of respawning only to perform the same actions each time. Not knowing what this feeling was, Archontides tried to find solace within a #universe of uncontrolled consistency by listening to #FrankOcean’s Be Yourself on repeat for an irrational number of times:
Listen, stop trying to be somebody else / Don't try to be someone else / Be yourself and know that that's good enough / Don't try to be someone else / Don't try to be like someone else / Don't try to act like someone else, be yourself / Be secure with yourself / Rely and trust upon your own decisions / On your own beliefs
Archontides began sensing the overwhelming reality of the #imposter #syndrome after having been bestowed such industry attention. #Hysterically #crying like a baby seal on the studio couch whilst browsing through the ‘critically acclaimed’ section of Netflix, Archontides made the wise decision of watching Ghost (1990) in search of what being ‘critically acclaimed’ exactly means in a postmodern simciety. Having watched Patrick Swayze and what’s her face’s name Demi Belluci’s moment in Ghost, Archontides furiously began #experimenting with red clay in increasing frustration convinced that #physically #beating materials by hand would relieve the #eerie #feeling of #guided #non-existence.
Archontides’ therapeutic process, dare say #art #therapy, energetically streamlined by the #millennial fascination of finding oneself within the grander scheme of the universe, has caused the artist to become relentlessly #over-productive. In an effort to escape the frustrating routine of predestined actions and desperately trying to comprehend what ‘being yourself’ means, the artist frantically searches for an answer in Self by #BarryDainton, stumbling upon mind-boggling #conspiracy #theories about #alternate #universes. #Fully #immersed in the notion of the #simulation #theory and frowned upon by #collectors, #gallerists and #institutions who were expecting new work months ago, the sinking feeling of failed expectations lingers and forces Archontides begin a #schizophrenic dialogue - Archontides no longer a solitary maker but a duet, and even more so, a group of unanimous persons. Albeit collaborative in nature through #voluntary and #naive #servitude, the Archontides’ Emotional Sculptures are the result of exploring the divine infinity of all emotions in Plutchnik’s ‘Wheel of Emotions’. Emotional Sculptures take form as depressed, excited, anxious, ashamed, happy, disappointed, satisfied and angry entities all imbued within the process of non-arbitrary making - the artist is not only present, but transformed into a productive machine of boundless and #tangible #emotional #artistic #production.
Making reference to #Coldplay, the #BritishNickelback, the artist states, “Nobody said it was easy, no one ever said it would be this hard - so I found a way to make more of me to make more of them, that way, everyone is happy and maybe I will have time to feel more like my #real #self”.