VIRUS HOMO SAPIENS. The light in avaf

            by Sarah Corona

avaf: assume vivid astro focus, another violet alien fetus, absolutely venomous accurately fallacious, a very anxious feeling, adore voluptuous actresses forever, assuming vast astrological facts, admirers vegans appreciators followers, a voi amici fantastici, amorously vaticinating agamogenesis fun, always verbally anticipating fame, aligning vital ascending fun, aviation voluntarily assumes fornication, adalgisa vienense austríaca foguetão!, anzicchè fuori vedo avanti, assisterende volumøse avtroppende fripassasjerer….to name a few of the acronyms that the artistic duo avaf uses for its works/projects.

 

The two artists prefer not to focus on themselves as creators, a single personality, unique and determined, but rather to change and assume different aspects every time they create a work, specific to the cause they want to represent. One could compare avaf to a chameleon that continuously changes without limits and that adapts its colors to the new environment. In the case of avaf, you do not talk about a work of art. You use the double moniker “work/project” because what they do deviates from the object of art, considered in its traditional manner: their works/projects take upon environmental conditions, offering a synesthetic life experience.They are the outcome of a larger thought and are meant to be experienced, absorbed, contaminated, and shared.

 

The works/projects are composed of two elements in endless combinations. There is the work of art, and there is a life experience. With this dual character, avaf creates with the use of countless elements–images, materials, media, colors, sizes, weight. Every work/project is a giant kaleidoscope, a serendipitous collage with an infinite number of possibilities and interpretations. The driving engine is an awareness that we are bombarded daily with images and information like never before. New technologies, the potential of Internet and its endless options for sharing information, “have exponentially increased access to knowledge and perception, communication, and diversity of expression. The outcome is a new species, a being between a human and a virus, able to think, imagine, and process information at high speed. ‘VIRUS HOMO SAPIENS.’ Welcome to the club!”

 

Obsessions, oddities, magnificence, and anxiety are central elements in the works/projects by avaf, where neon is often a major element. Space and time are presented on different sensory levels, and light assumes a three-dimensional form. Comprised of various shapes and endless shades of color, the neon’s hypnotic allure and nostalgic appearance generate feelings of both melancholy and surprise. avaf designs individual neon pieces to interact with each other and create new meanings through different sequences of being turned on and off. The intermittent light in the large-scale installations references the neurotic behavior of our contemporary society and the psychological experience of our day-to-day life.

 

All works have a sculptural and totem-like quality which underscores the mystical nature of the represented scenes. Despite the fact that the constituent elements of the works are taken from real life, the viewer is often confronted with a completely fantastic world. These elements have been selected, isolated, and then reintroduced into a new context through the creative filter of the artists. The chaos that reigns lies somewhere between Dante’s inferno and the interior of a digital tablet.

 

The fluorescent light invades the entire space and pierces the spectator with its colors, pulsations, and impressions like a virus. Whether natural or artificial, light is a divine force that fascinates, generates life, and incites our imagination. It is hard to imagine a work of avaf without neon and light; those neon tubes in combination with other materials seems absolute. avaf would have said “awesome virus amuse fortuitous.” We say “art varies again fantastic!”

 

Photo Credits: 

Avaf - installation view

1 | “another violet alien fetus”, 2009 – neon, transformer – 4 1/2 x 50 x 1 inches – Edition of 8
2 | “american virgin astonishing fecundity”, 2009 – neon, transformer – 7 3/4 x 51 1/4 x 1 inches – Edition of 8
3 | absolutely venomous accurately fallacious (naturally delicious) – mixed-media installation – Deitch Projects, Long Island City, New York – May 10 – August 10, 2008 – “Neon Box Head” animated neon and two way mirror – “absolutely venomous accurately fallacious (naturally delicious)” reconstructed Brooklyn house facade, Giant Lady sculpture and neons
4 | absolutely venomous accurately fallacious (naturally delicious) – mixed-media installation – Deitch Projects, Long Island City, New York – May 10 – August 10, 2008 – “Neon Box Head” animated neon, transformer and two way mirror
5 | absorb viral attack fantasy – mixed-media installation – Hiromi Yoshii Gallery, Tokyo, Japan – April 1-28, 2006 – “Blade Runner on Hexagon”, 2006 Animated neon on painted plywood base, transformer – “Colored Triangles”, 2006 Neon and transformer – “Bus Placard”, “Contortionist Placard”, 2006 Self-adhesive vinyl print mounted on cut to shape plywood – “Sodomy is not a Civil Right”, 2005 Balloons – “Butch Queen 5”, 2006 Wallpaper
6 | artistiquement voué au feu – mixed-media installation – Galerie Hussenot, Paris, France – May 6 – July 7, 2010 – “Nothing Novel, Nothing Strange Part 2”, 2008 Animated neon, one-way mirror, plexiglass, controller, motor, aluminum – “ancient virus attacks francophones!”, 2010 neon, aluminum, transformer – 170 cm x 120 cm x 12 cm – Ed. of 1
7 | “nakesha mimi kiki toy supriya ferrari tocarra dark tamala latoya skye”, 2007 (detail) – animated neon, synchronizing DMX system, and music – neon installation part of “a very anxious feeling”, 2007 solo exhibition at John Connelly Presents
8,9 | “homocrap #2”, 2005 – mixed-media installation – Galleria Massimo de Carlo, Milan, Italy – “Eye Neon” animated neon and transformer – “Tom Cruising 2” Wallpaper – peanuts
10 | aqui volvemos adornos frívolos – mixed-media installation – Peres Projects, Berlin, Germany – September 20 – October 25, 2008 – “Nothing Novel, Nothing Strange Part 2”, 2008 Animated neon, one-way mirror, plexiglass, controller, motor, aluminum – Paper masks with 3D fireworks lenses
11 | aqui volvemos adornos frívolos – mixed-media installation – Peres Projects, Berlin, Germany – September 20 – October 25, 2008
13 | abra vana alucinete fogo – mixed-media installation – Casa Triângulo, São Paulo, Brazil – September 1 – October 7, 2006 -“Indio Frying Hot”, 2006 animated neon and transformer – “Portal”, 2006 (in collaboration with Kleber Matheus) neons and plexiglas – “Spinning Top Bananas”, 2006 (in collaboration with Kleber Matheus and Fábio Gurjão) neons, transformers, plywood, wicker baskets, color lights, plexiglas – “2 Fanzine Abravanation 1 and 2”, 2006 Wallpaper

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