Pravdoliub Ivanov – ”What You See” (2013)

Pravdoliub Ivanov’s exclamation “But Never Enough” written over a stenciled cutout of Mies van der Rohe’s phrase “Less is more” both build on and cross out the German-American architect’s famous thought. Through text, hand writing and choice of material (spray over old cardboard), the installation Never Enough renders van der Rohe’s words simultaneously true and untrue. All the more so, because the strictly artistic context appears to be insufficient. Pravdoliub Ivanov’s contribution to the modernist ideal of minimal visual expense is a noticeably angry street gesture carried out in less than exquisite hand writing. For if “But Never Enough” had been said out loud, it would have been through gritted teeth.

The whole show What You See is based on the same idea of established, often repeated phrases, in whose truthfulness we cannot be certain. What they all have in common is that they are never sufficient and never complete. The more authoritative they sound, the more they should be questioned, whatever form that takes: reshaping, adding, subtracting, layering.

Similarly multilayered is the project entitled What You See Is Not What You Get, which comprises several works. Its point of origin is a commercial slogan from the 1950s – “What You See Is What You Get”.

… written by Daniela Radeva.

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