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Cătălin Marius Petrișor Hereșanu It’s all in your vivid imagination

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Date: 
Friday, 8 December 2023 to Saturday, 20 January 2024
Opening: 
Friday, 8 December 2023 - 6:15pm

Elizabeth Xi Bauer announces an exhibition of works by Cătălin Marius Petrișor Hereșanu. In this survey of Petrișor’s oeuvre, seminal pieces will be displayed with works from across the artist’s career, as well as newly created paintings, as a way of exploring the artist’s reinvention of his style and practice. 

Cătălin Marius Petrișor Hereșanu is a multidisciplinary artist who favours the field of painting. Cătălin Petrișor’s paintings are carriers for his interventions. The surfaces of his paintings are an exploration into deconstructing reality to reveal the action of image making. For example, in the important solo exhibition The Illusion of Depth (2015) at the Mind Set Art Centre in Taipei, Taiwan, Petrișor explored ways to challenge the Renaissance principle of perspective. Petrișor’s works also examine the notion of space and imagination as the viewer’s guide to exploring the world around us.  

The exhibition's title, It's all in your vivid imagination, is taken from the artist’s 2018 work. It's all in your vivid imagination and feelings (2018) depicts the subject wearing a VR headset without haptic gloves, which would usually accompany the VR headset when it is worn. Instead, the subject can feel the skull in their hands, making it more tangible than their VR experience. 

Early in the artist’s career, Petrișor created a series of semi-realistic, black and white paintings, which incorporated scientific-like elements drawn on the top layer of the works in graphite. These included motifs such as beating hearts; our solar system; and light refracting through prisms. Combined with a grayscale palette, the works from this series have a supernatural and eerie quality to them.  

Petrișor then went on to introduce colour to his next series of works, creating bold, almost confrontational works. The crescendo of this creative process came when the artist decided to cut his paintings, sometimes completely, into strips. This was due to a mixture of creative frustration and the urge to begin anew by pushing his practice to new realms. Each strip was destroying a previous creation whilst simultaneously threading a new work. 

These ‘recycled’ strips were woven into lattice arrangements which then became new artworks, each square like a pixel on a screen. Petrișor developed his style by painting on top, adding photographs, drawing, and even adding some sculptural elements to his paintings to play with scale and the boundaries of painting and sculpture.    

Another body of work, whose idea was conceived in 2021, explores pulses. The artist explains the concepts behind this series, ‘’In these paintings I attempted to transpose the concepts of ‘rhythm’ and ‘animation’ in parallel with other themes that I was exploring through my work. I imagined that these paintings would represent a rhythm with a chromatic scale that would transfer good vibrations to the viewer. I created the paintings in the Pulse series in such a state of peace and, I believe, this is conveyed in the works. I generated the vertical rhythm by horizontal spots, and the horizontal one by brighter vertical spots, like slits of light.’’ 

Most recently, Petrișor has marked a new direction in his practice. At first glance the works appear to be the artist’s cut up and recomposed woven paintings, however, on closer inspection, the viewer witnesses that the artist has created the same ‘illusion’ through the act of painting alone. The fabric effect is created by scratching the wet layer of paint on top of the dried underlayer with a knife; it is a process much like the sgraffito technique. The artist explains, ‘’Working on these paintings is like an exercise in attention, the horizontal and vertical gestures, those that create the illusion of fabric when viewed closely, also create a good rhythm.’’ Beneath the top layer, forms can be seen underneath, such as natural forms and faces, after a period of ‘sinking in’. 

Petrisor’s new body of works, created in 2023, began whilst the artist was working on his ‘scratched’ paintings works that imitate fabric. These works are created using the scratched off excess paint which is then placed on small pieces of paper to become the basis for other paintings. Paintings from this series begin with blue colours, which represent the sky, and brown or green colours to represent he earth. The aforementioned saved excess paint is then used on top of these colours in order for the artist to shape it into human bodies, adding and adding until they became crowds, that appear to rise to the sky. This body of work symbolises for Petrisor people who rise in consciousness as these works depict the whole group represented in the painting but also to each individual: each person adding to the whole at the time of the ascension. 

A Gentle Persuasion (2023) is inspired by the story of creation in the book of Genesis, an important teaching of the Original Sin for Christians, a moment Christians believed made humanity aware of their imperfections. “Starting with this, I imagined a joint scene with two young people in love. Although it is inspired by the creation story from Genesis, in this work the roles are somewhat reversed, the woman creates the man through a persuasive gesture that can also be a gesture of reconciliation; a gesture of caress; a gesture through which the girl tries to convince the boy that all evil has passed or that all evil is for good, for self-knowledge,’’ Catalin Petrisor. 

Since becoming a father, Petrișor has balanced caring for his young child with working in the studio. He explains the impact this has had on his outlook as an artist. ‘’The time spent with the child is completely different from all my experiences I have had so far as a painter. Somehow, I was led to believe that these two, working as an artist and raising children, are incompatible, however, I now believe this to be a false prejudice. Walking with [my child] who is curious about absolutely everything connects and anchors me to a reality full of curiosities about the most ‘insignificant’ of things. I wish to use this lens whilst in the studio: this wonder that the child has for the world they are discovering daily for themselves.’’ 

Artist ( Description ): 

Cătălin Marius Petrișor Hereșanu (born, 1978, Craiova, Romania) lives and works in Greblești, and in Râmnicu Vâlcea, Romania.  

Petrișor completed a BA in Fine Arts, Painting, University of Art and Design of Cluj-Napoca, Romania followed by an MA in Visual Arts at the University of Art and Design of Cluj-Napoca. 

His works has been exhibited in solo and group exhibitions in Taiwan, China, U.S.A., Russia, Israel, Romania, U.K., Denmark, France, the Netherlands, Switzerland, Germany, Czech Republic and Poland.  

Petrișor’s work is in the permanent collections of The National Gallery, Prague, Czech Republic; The Nederlandsche Bank Collection, Amsterdam, Netherlands and The National Museum of Contemporary Art, Bucharest, Romania. 

In 2022, Cătălin Petrișor’s work was acquired by MNAC – The National Museum of Contemporary Art, Bucharest, Romania. The work is now part of the MNAC permanent collection and was exhibited as part of Puls 22, an exhibition of artworks acquired by the museum in 2022. The museum promotes Romanian and international artists with a programme that draws thousands of visitors from around the world each year. This exhibition, which celebrated the museum's most recent acquisitions, was accompanied by a series of public conferences organised by MNAC International Academy. The exhibition ran until 1st October 2023. 

In 2023, Petrișor participated in the exhibition Core 0012. Inopportune Encounters 03, at Pasaj Cozia Ramnicu Valcea, Romania.

Telephone: 
020 3048 5220
Venue ( Address ): 

Fuel Tank, 8-12 Creekside
London SE8 3DX

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