May we reconstruct what has been lost. Second edition. brings to the public attention an intervention by Iulian Bisericaru, re-contextualized large-scale painted panels commissioned for this year’s edition of Sibiu’s International Marathon, a selection of which is presented here for the second time in the form of a site-specific installation.
As suggested by the title, the intervention is an exercise in deconstruction and re-contextualization. Rejecting an easy reading which overlays the work’s former temporary location, Sibiu’s largest public square, to a space of capitalist consumption pertaining to pop-culture, the intervention utilizes reverse psychology to exercise of awareness regarding ecological disasters that happen as a result of mass consumption. Rather than depicting images of waste resulted from mass pollution, Bisericaru chose to depict pristine landscapes of astounding beauty, reminders of what could be if humanity would start preserving its natural surroundings. The panels are a metaphor for things that we have lost, but that exists in fractions in either physical form, or in our imagination. The serenity of the colour palette intersects with environmental matters, direct effects of social, political and economic movements. The artist plays with the binary utopia / dystopia: the images can evoke a lost Paradise, a vanished terrace from the Hanging Gardens of Babylon, which we have already lost, simulations of which we are currently in danger of losing: Amazon Forests, coral reef systems, Alaskan kelp forests, wetlands, springs, swamps or lagoons on each continent, to name only a few. Habitats – including us, as part of the ecosystem – are constantly under threat from increasing temperatures, reduced agricultural harvests, extensive droughts and rampant wildfires, flooding, extreme weather events, and public health breakdowns.
Iulian Bisericaru proposes a decolonization of nature, in an attempt to transcend human-centered exceptionalism, and proposing a simple alternative: seeing ourselves as part of nature’s endless bounty. As such, the work is inscribed in a body of art which recognizes that the way in which we see nature carries deep implications and often unacknowledged ramifications for how we organize our society.