Eduardo Leon acts as an archaeologist to research, archive, design and style garments that are doomed as waste. Trained as graphic designer he is drawn to the fashion world in which imaging is everything. In 2017 he founds the label Avoidstreet, in which he, as in fashion, works with a different artistic team on each project. Leon uses fashion's flip side, where images are more important than the actual wearing.
An essay by artist Hito Steyerl inspires Leon to actually look at clothes as jpegs: a copy of the real fashion piece, in low resolution. The best examples he finds on the streets, in city life and on the construction site, that have become the most important sites for “exhumation”. Preexisting clothes people no longer want survive as crafted objects, new installations and subtle performances.
Gregor Wintgens turns popular culture inside out. His path in life takes him from photography to advertising, from advertising to anti-advertising, and finally: contemplation in his current work. As art academy drop out he takes part in the lively street art scene of the '90s. Wintgens takes up work at communication agencies such as KesselsKramer and TMP Worldwide. He learns to create marketing concepts, and how to break them.
When Wintgens comes accross the ideas of philosopher Roger Scruton and of art historian Robert Hughes he develops his alter ego Pacceka, a Buddhist monk. Wintgens pursues the power of beauty, and a design language that invites you to think and feel, and no longer strives for sensation. From a world of big branding he transforms slogans into new, unreadable forms.
“Not her lush curls nor her lingerie attracts the attention, but the discrepancy between the power that her body radiates and the hesitation, the uncertainty that is within her glance, captured by Mubarak precisely as well as subtly.” Mischa Andriessen, poet, writer and reviewer on the exhibition opening of 'Laila Mubarak – For Who She Is', 26 October 2018 at Lauwer.
Laila Mubarak captures inner processes. Often her subject is the young woman or young man and the life events they live through. The body language and the little differences in the face and hands that unveils a state of 'being', fascinate her. “How much can we still perceive? Do we see more than our own projections?” These are questions she wishes to ask by means of analogue photography series. With a camera and knowledge of Gestalt therapy Mubarak gets through to the person that sits in front of her.
The work of Maria Tyakina is characterized by refined, manual crafts work with materials that are functional by nature. In her work she explores the way perception is mediated by objects and the relation they develop with the body. Solfatara, a project from 2016, made near the namesake volcano in Italy, means the start of the printing with an iron plate, akin to early photographic techniques such as heliogravures (engraving with sunlight) and photolithography (printing with stones).
Tyakina is trained in applied design, but soon positioned herself between art and design through her love for 'savage objects' and 'things'.
“Things are back, or so the rumors say. After a century of oblivion in most social and cultural research, and after decades of linguistic and textual turns, there is now much talk about a material twist: a (re)turn to things.” Bjørnar Olsen in ‘Savage Objects’, 2012.
Paul Knight’s photographic work has evolved from large-scale analogue prints of unpopulated domestic interiors to intimate depictions of the life he shares with his partner. He engages with the photograph as if it were an object which has the ability to be reflective but essentially uses this reflectivity to its own ends. Knight’s work typically uses intimate situations as inspiration for both its material and construction.
It is through Knight's interest in the potential of the flat-form of the photographic print to contain space and volume, which has led him to the weaving of hand made cloth. These woven works often have as their starting point utility items from the domestic or everyday and are re-imagined to reveal the relations between people and objects.