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Valérie Mannaerts
Month of Photography
Drawings and Photographs
(catalogue entry)

Group Show curated by Gary Webb
Participating artists:
Antje Majewski, Gary Webb,
Henry Coleman, James Baxter,
James Ferris, Katja Strunz,
Luke Dowd, Nicole Wermers,
Roger Hiorns, Saron Hughes
25/10/2003 - 6/12/2003

Vangelis Vlahos
October 2003

Jason Middlebrook
10/12/2003 - 7/2/2004

Despina Isaia, Nayia Frangouli,
Nina Papaconstantinou
ARCO - Grecia 04

Yiannis Grigoriadis
25/2/2004 - 7/4/2004

Apostolos Karastergiou
art athina 04
7 - 10/5/2004

Koen Wastijn & Nicolas Kozakis
(on the occasion of the Olympic
20/5/2004 - 10/7/2004
and 3-31/8/2004 from 20.00-24.00
every day

Valerie Mannaerts combines works on paper, photography, and video, in installations and series in which the visual language is concurrent. In the gallery, the artist is showing a series of drawings that seem playful, depicting figures in various stages of costume, but behind the surface lurks a darker image. They are light and sweet but terror hides behind their shadows. All drawings were executed one after another in a certain continuation but the chance effect of the actual depiction remained. Just as the photographs, the artist does not preconceive the composition or contents. The photographs, non-staged, do venture into the outside world, although again in the immediate environment of the artist. They are linked by a certain feeling, an atmosphere, a common factor, a screen that is put between the image and the viewer, an instability - the pointed revolver, the hiding hands, the wooden boards, the precarious balance, are all moments that carry a certain drama within. Valerie investigates in this way the shaky ground between the private and the public domain and the subtle line where both meet and where one sometimes goes over into the other. This is also the idea behind the collage that the viewer meets upon leaving the gallery and where s/he is confronted with cutouts of young women that return his or her gaze. There is a certain expectation but perhaps also a certain reproach in their eyes as in the pictures of missing or deceased young people. Most of the work is very layered, with the viewer being thrust between a straightforward, sometimes simple surface image and the depths that it contains. The intersection of the different media helps him or her to discover the intentions of the artist by familiarizing him/herself with its idiom.