Monday, November 19, 2012

Miguel Afonso da Conceição’s - ELEVATION - Review by Debora Alanna

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Elevation, filaments bonded, knotted tension strung below the ceiling of the gallery, but lofted, an unreachable nervousness, a taut, lighthearted strain buoys within nuances of pink and florescent pink. Miguel Afonso da Conceição stretched angular ties mounted high secures a dissection of aired spacing, an analysis of height and width, riding high and wide, a complicated, cat’s cradle game gone awry. In his book titled Cat’s Cradle, Kurt Vonnegut’s character, Bokonon, the prophet that started his own humanist religion: ‘Busy, busy, busy is what we Bokononists whisper whenever we think of how complicated and unpredictable the machinery of life really is.’ Chapter 32, pp. 65-66. da Conceição describes a busy, demanding intricacy of existence within Elevation.

da Conceição spent nearly four days producing the intricacy of his installation, Persistent chaos draws a hovering elasticity of intent. There is a Duchampian inclination to obstruct meaning, like Josh Smith’s string installation, in tribute to Marcel Duchamp, in “Genesis, I’m Sorry” at Greene Naftali in 2007. With Elevation, da Conceição’s meaning may seem obfuscated, but is elevated from the relenting knots to the unworldly dimension of the space between material existence and the crux of substance. Not here, beyond, but present. A sheltering, delicately entwined firmament.

Ronit Baranga’s We are all made of dust employs ceramic hands to tether strung coercion where da Conceição’s constraint is fitted directly to the walls. The result of the connectivity from wall to string is fluent, careful presentment of the factual connection between essence and reality. The inference produced is philosophically lyric, Hegel’s Lectures on the History of Philosophy, Plato and the Platonists, Chapter 111. First Period, Third Division: Plato and Aristotle, second paragraph: “For what is peculiar in the philosophy of Plato is its application to the intellectual and supersensuous world, and its elevation of consciousness into the realm of spirit. Thus the spiritual element which belongs to thought obtains in this form an importance for consciousness, and is brought into consciousness; just as, on the other hand, consciousness obtains a foothold on the soil of the other.” da Conceição articulates conjoined thoughts with his pervasive angularity, raising apprehensive consciousness, interconnecting the sphere of the gallery’s upward space into a spiritedly substantial sub-ceiling. A discomfited foothold for conscious deliberation.

Elevation is too an intellectually numinous exploration, supersensuous, untouchable, a spirit journey. Duchamp’s Writings, 88ff, considers the experience beyond the third dimension, where colour, like perspective ‘cannot be tested by touch.” Elevation, raised beyond touch, da Conceição objectifies the intangible space of elevated thought and feelings with a rosy hue, complexity’s heightening, and an edgy but cheerfully confident revelation.
Debora Alanna
ELEVATION   - Souvenir Gallery  - 5 –14 November 2012

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