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Of Limits

An exhibition of Borbála Szántó

Opening: 27 November, 2018, 6 pm

On view until: 11 January, 2019

Metal constructions, hand-blown glass sculptures and everyday objects form the installation Of Limits by Borbála Szántó. The work stages a halted moment of a probable performative action, a certain shop-window experience where attention is drawn into a constructed micro environment balancing on the verge of fiction and reality. The installation recalls the details of a past action, while encourages the viewer to finish the story according to personal impressions. 

The environment recalls familiar spaces and actions but without a fixed functional purpose it merely acts as a stage without activation. Multi-layered visual references of gymnastics, a metal workshop, the blinding flood lights of a construction site, the human body as well as objects that are used to support, protect or on the contrary constrain movement all collide within one scene creating a multi-layered information cluster.

The interplay of materials further intensifies the uncanny. The hand-blown glass objects lean over rough, forged metal poles that on one hand act as a prosthetic support for their bodies but in the mind of the viewer also forecast the potential shattering of the fragile performer if the balanced moment tips over the edge. The clashing of the smooth surface of the transparent glass and the unforgiving hardness of a seemingly protective gym mat further dissolves the status quo of materials and action and of purpose and function.

There is a graspable tension between the coexistent seduction and repulsion within the work. Soft and hard, smooth and rough, aesthetical and ugly, all coexist. The consequent ambivalence and tension highlights the uncertain relationship in contemporary culture between the allusive look and real bodily engagement, between what seems to be and what actually is. This work explores issues around the above-mentioned potentiality and suggestibility including a conscious decision making around power and control within artist, viewer and object relationships. 

Borbála Szántó (1990) graduated from the department of Sculpture of the Royal College of Art in London in 2017. For her graduation work she won the David Troostwyk Bursary Award by Matt’s Gallery and the Royal College of Art. In her work she is dealing with the intermediate dimensions of space, using sculptural elements and various materials.