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Alexander Stavrou's work reflects on the dynamics of natural process and the transformation of energy into mass and form. This practice inquires into contrasting relationships of what is real and what is perceived as an image. The act of painting is both a law unto itself – its own process, amenable to structuring, dismantling or obliteration – and a metaphoric language able to reference the endless cycles of life, death and renewal, the human condition and its material context.
He explores the clash between chaos and order to which painting lends itself. As material and process, paint and the act of painting begin by being chaotic in his practice. Their potential effects can however constitute a ‘vocabulary’ of means which speak through their organisation of their orchestration. In this sense, a painting is the sum total of visible difference and the interplay between one part of the painted surface and another with regard to colour, tone; transparency, opacity; fast or slow; fluidity, texture etc.
The resolution that Stavrou looks for within these shifting values will typically produce a ‘presence’ of some kind which should be as convincingly real as a building, a mountain or even a domestic utensil but independent of any specific referent. In the space of that uncertainty these presences may induce a receptive state in the spectators’ imagination where aspiration, wonder and trepidation might become embodied in their most potent forms.
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