On Tuesday the 12th of December at 7 PM we open 2*0*1*7, the long-awaited solo-show for sculptor Mircea Roman at AnnArt gallery. The exhibition reunites 15 never before exhibited pieces in wood sculpture and sketching in a selection by the author of his most recent works done in 2017.

This is a special year for Mircea Roman due to him winning the UAP Award for Sculpture; having sold the piece Wall III to the National Museum of Art in Craiova as well as taking part in an impressive number of 14 group exhibitions in Romania and abroad – including the Romanian-Korean contemporary art “by-lateral” at Boreyong. During this time, he was also active in supporting his peers; in 2017, Roman was one of the initiators and organizers of “Support” project that introduced a derelict space from the UAP Compound, Spaţiul Turnatoria, in a possible exhibition circuit. The show 2*0*1*7 is accompanied by a critical text by art historian Aurelia Mocanu:

From column statues with Catalan harshness, from armless crucifies bent forward expiated and nailed, from archaic settlements with legs held close to the chest, the figures become, at their limits, funnel boxes, a pit of sheathing, with only a few terminal details confessing of humanity.

For over three decades, sculptor Mircea Roman has invested a wooden base, meaning a piece of board, as the bolt key for a sculptural production “figuratively-built” of an exemplary generating force. With the arms usually amputated, and recently with add-on boxes as superior limbs, Mircea Roman’s characters are anxious terminals of scaffolding akin to rudimentary and aggressed humanism. Figured towers, leaning or folded, with chests forward as if it were one last glimmer of breaking, emanate the feeling of tortured solitude.

Wood left bare or whitewashed is glued with resin and decorated with minium. The three nuances are primordial for a regime of austerity and surviving. The archaic style references, be it Assyrian or Pre-Columbian (seen in the plaques) leads to the set-up of “eternal settlements”.

The feet are hyper-obsolete and, through their quiet symmetry, they “Egyptionize”, meaning they induce atemporality and transmit the endurance of the humanoids envisioned by the sculptor. Certain wing-arms are asymmetrical of late, and they stabilize the pyramid boxes united in an hourglass. The palms and ankles, always privileged by Mircea Roman’s figurative, are the isthmus between human and reified, the communication pipes which cross the crate-bodies, between face and the portrait of feet soles.

Fragments which bend within a carcass never complete “the Roman figurative”. They are compacts that produce a truncated torso, a decapitated torso where a pit opens, a strange wooden resonance box. If the local sculpture scene has Napoleon Tiron who rose homunculi from kindling, Doru Covrig made golems out of pressed cardboard and other scraps, Simon Moldovan created humanoids out of industrial waste, but only Mircea Roman would not “complete| his figure. His elaborated process being so ingenious, that of compact plating with circular finitude. The fragmentation, the breakings, the cuts and posture of Roman’s characters – via these consequent amputations – transmit tragedy. It is a vestige with a painful history.