Painting III (2000-2015)
Frissiras museum presents, from 1 October 2014 to 1 March 2015, at the building of 3 Monis Asteriou in Plaka, the exhibition “Painting III (2000-2015)”. This exhibition is the third and final part of the trilogy of exhibitions presented by Frissiras museum, which was launched in 2012, examining the evolution of figurative painting in Greece and Europe during the past two decade of the 20th century, through the works of Frissiras museum’s collections.
According to Τhanassis Μoutsopoulos, curator of the exhibition:
‘New century, new art? We all understand that when we present the art of a new century expectations run high—perhaps too high. Is it really new, the art of this new century (which is further charged as the beginning of a new millennium)? There is little evidence to suggest that. What differentiates this decade from the one before is the decline of the phenomenon of New British Art which dominated the last decade of the 20th century as the collector who created it turned towards painting. Now painting appears as strong and prominent as it was about twenty years before. The other great change is the fading away (if not the extinction) of the ‘superstar artist’. The British Damien Hirst or the Japanese Takashi Murakami were the last such examples, after whom no new ones seem to have emerged.
In a very difficult time, generally but especially for representational painting —which went through a post-war phase of rejection and derision, fierce competition from photography, a postmodern revival and the return to fashion and the art market, a new crisis and, finally (and arguably more wisely) a strategic focus on a few artists who paint after deep deliberation and propose their solutions— one must be very careful and precise. Apart from the overall (and profound) social crisis in this country, many speak of an equally deep crisis in art. Painterly representation may have received multiple blows already, but now the newer media of photography and video are also under fire, not for their obsolete views but for their intangible nature. We live in an age when the medium has but one option: to reinvent itself anew (or at least in part) in order to remain convincing amidst the feast of media, pop music and, of course, the cinema. In other words, it must necessarily stand; survive autonomously, away from the mothballs of museums and the (unbearable) weight of history and the past (which have a lesser impact on media, pop music or the cinema).
Of course, today’s painting should be in a privileged position compared to the commercial collapse of the other media —video, installations or photography— and their own widespread crisis (thanks to its eccentricities, conceptual art is at risk of becoming derided and caricatured once again in its history).