Maia Ștefana Oprea’s fourth solo show at AnnArt – after a solo show as part of the viennacontemporary art fair and two others at our gallery, “Locus Neminis II” (2018) and “Stivuire” (2016) – brings to the public a new series of canvas, mixed media and object-installation works. Curated by Ana-Daniela Sultana-Cipariu, the selection is largely inspired by a new lifestyle and a new artistic vision acquired by Maia Ștefana Oprea with the her settling a permanent residence in the rural area.
A visual artist of the super-contemporary area (b. 1987), Maia Ștefana Oprea uses in her artistic vision her own taxonomy of conceptual origin, which she has consolidated and developed throughout her unique artistic career. Thus, this selection consists in an installation with "zercs", a term-concept introduced in the glossary of his artistic practice since 2012, which designates "abstract structures for codifying reality". The zercs made this year become a pictorial support and acquire pedestals of varying shapes and sizes. They are made to watch and guard the works in the exhibition, maintaining their interactive character, as they can be relocated by visitors in the gallery space.
Without clearly and exclusively resorting to representations of nature, the new series of works is influenced by the somewhat premonitory decision of the artist to permanently move in with her family to the countryside, before the pandemic. At the end of 2019, after a period in which she oscillated between the house in Bucharest and the one in the countryside, Maia Ștefana Oprea chose a new lifestyle and a new manifestation of aesthetics, far from the epicenter of the art system. Questioning, for example, the continuous production of contemporary art, the painting "Fragile" refers to the art market, especially to the transportation of works of art to fairs and exhibitions.
Of course, this new paradigm implies a different relationship with time, hence the title of the exhibition "PASSING FOR MYSELF", which refers to spending time between horticulture, family life and artistic activity. As Maia Ștefana Oprea herself confesses, "the Mindwanderings paintings are the result of these thousands of moments gathered together, they are my passing nights when I can paint, they are the way I let time pass me by, they are creation as immersion." Moreover, about the works in the series "Plans for Building a House", she concludes that they bring together her current interests in different forms of artistic expression: both in art and in life, the discovery of permaculture as a way of life, the slow renunciation of synthetic colors and prefabricated substrates, the manufacture of one's own natural pigments and various work tools, the delights and sorrows of manual labor ”.
Whether she treats the flat surface of the canvas or models volumetric pieces, Maia Ștefana Oprea manages to animate her works to such an extent that they, in turn, have the ability to inspire vitality to those who explore and collect them. (Ana Daniela Sultana Cipariu, curator)