Ziarul Financiar

Searching for the primordial man
Corneliu Antim | February, 2004

Florica Prevenda, the artist grieved only by her own questions remained without answers, passes her winter” at  “Simeza” gallery like a Diogenes lost in the more and more intricate thickets of this century, searching for the absolute human extract. “Shadows of the present” are the icy representations without face and without identity which inhabit a robotized universe of codes and humaniform silhouettes, of guards and supervisors, of obsessive and absorbing symbols of a conventionalized and dehumanized existence.

In her previous suite of “impresses” exhibited at the National Museum of art- that revealing and hallucination gallery of masks/characters which seemed to be the image of a decorporalized humanity in a vision reminding of Goya through the profoundness of the explanations and of the typological and comportamental significations, the development of the concept represents a more concise but also more dramatic step through its interrogative tension.
What fascinates in Florica Prevenda’s creation of the last years is the conversion of a great expressive density of the ideatic rustling and of its painful lucidity – attributes characteristic of the perfecting of her maturity – in pictorial perfect gesture with a net, plain energy lacking any ornamental artifices. Everything gets the warning consistency of the symbol. Man himself, as axial character in the plastic composition and philosophy of the artist sums up a spectral entity, dematerialized in a world of multiple alienations. Prevenda feels the imperious need of marking this disintegrating destiny of mankind. Her “shadows” cannot speak. Their corporality is suggested only by rather standardized contours, schematized in gestures, cold in attitudes and brutally excluded by centrifugation from the circles of communication. The artist introduces in this plastic construction different materialities variedly structured, fixed like some targets on a shooting range.
The suggestion of maximum depersonalization is amplified by the colour dominants – black and white- with the entire scale of greys between these two poles of radicalized light. We notice the sign of an intentional exaltation of the dull, dramatic dimension of human destiny, more and more felt by the contemporary world that the artist obsessively perceives like a wound always open.
Prevenda opts in this effort to configure an abstract reality – the human decadence- for a form of representation that I would name “objectual concept of stuck pictorialized reliefs”. Because we don’t deal with what we usually understand by “painting-object”. Not this aspect is important, the artist inventing the forms and means of plastic expression in an exercise of adequation which is proper to her, and admirably harmonizes with the ideatic and conceptual tonicity that characterizes her. As regards composition, this suite of “Shadows of the Present” is the highest demonstration of plastic performance of the artist until now. Rigour, sobriety, force of suggestion, clear poetic syntaxes, the harmony of material mixing and the refinement of the chromatic environment, these are qualities that Florica Prevenda unveils each time with new expressive valences and with an always surprising vocation of the unusual in her plastic language.
Prevenda draws our attention especially upon the man voided by his essential content: his sensible and spiritual load. That is to say, those components that animate him and define his divine origin. The humaniform substitute that the artist unveils in this exhibition is the “man-personal numerical code”; “homo cyberneticus”; “the cellular man”; “the mnemonic robot – man”; “the teleastic man”, devouring the ersatz-images of reality; “the man-banknote”, “the multifaceted man” of continuous duplicity. Evidently from this panoply of creatures of post-Edenism couldn’t be missing the models of orlandian nostalgia: “the man watching” over his own being, “the pious man”, “the enlightened man” keeping his dignity, “the primordial man” mummified in the puritanic chryslis of blue, the colour of the first visual awaking of the adamic prototype suspended between the sky and the ocean like a being animated by vast and endless serenities. In Florica Prevenda’s imagination, this human embryo still exists in each of us through its inner projections. She represented it like an alveolus of transparent blues, in a silhouette interrupted by a whole lot of open eyes, each showing a certain mood, feeling, aspiration, creed, hope…This is the homage confessed and paid of the “transparent” and original man, vertical through predestination but unbalanced through the systemic atrophying of his fundamental features. That’s exactly why all these “shadows of the present” painted by Prevenda seem disjointed and frail, in a permanent search for the lost verticality in a sea of imagistic greys and fractures. A portrait of the statistic, generic and anonymous individual.

English version by: Marilena Dracea