Dihedra / Charles Avery / fig-2 / The shadow of the real


In the middle of the space there is an open structure like a room with only two walls. The floor of the construction is formed by exagonal tiles. These stablish a net of closed elements, which easily join to homogeneous pieces, infinitely expandable.The two walls are white. On one of them we see a projection. A black shapes seem to fly endlessly as following a treadmill. Between the projection and the wall is a metal structure formed by the edges of an irregular polyhedron. It is not the structure of a Platonic solid that is not regular. The cube is, but this cuboid does not have all its sides equals.The same light that projects birds generates the shadow of the polyhedron, combining both into one narrative, making indistinguishable origin. The black spots shaped bird flying mostly in the shadow of the cell. They can go but always come back to it. Voluntarily. Incessantly. “We do not stay here we stay Because of gravity Because We like it”, it is written in the same building. And it is written on a human scale, in a human habitation, correlating birds in his cell with the men in their homes, real or metaphorical. The threat of housing, we should see reflected ourselves and decide if this really is what we want and we are here because we like it.

The artist has hatched a complex set of essences and appearances, lights and shadows. Dihedral, subtitle of the exhibition evokes the play of shadows and symmetries. In a room what is at the center is the man. Avery used cinema projection, a 16mm tape instead of video. The light projected through the tape, and what we see are the shadows. But the film itself is not reality but an abstraction of it. And is no a filming of real birds but an animation. On the wall are projected birds that are shadows of an abstract. A construct of a construct. References to Plato are evident, but not equivalent. 16mm tape does not belong to the world of ideas. It is real, it exists, but are not birds. And the birds reflected are not the animation, are the shadow of an animation.

The artist not only shows the elusive of the real, the sensible as the shadow of the real, but in a more Aristotelian than Platonic tone, agrees to live in the sensible. No splits in two the world as Plato. The birds come and go, there is no watertight compartment. There is not in the shade either in the structure which produces the shadow. Reality and perception are sides of the same coin, but they are never together. Avery shows the complexity of perception, while he assumes it. The birds live in the shadow of the cell because they want to.

The projector, its presence, its infinite movement and its sonorous cadence, is part of the artwork, while also the main generator. It is not separated from the artwork.

The reality is there, is elusive, we miss it in the sensible. The shadow of the real, as would say Mario Perniola is the closest we get from reality.

Charles Avery
12 – 18 Jan 2015