Shift Series (Horizontal / Vertical)
by: Roula Partheniou
Roula Partheniou’s largely sculptural practice centers on an exploration of the replica, calling into question the language of everyday objects and the ways that we read and decipher our environment. Her installations, which are often site-specific, utilize mechanisms such as optical illusion, associative play, visual similes, material puns, colour cues and the double-take, to draw an alternate logic from commonplace materials. The replica is employed as a tool to deconstruct the experience of perception; the difference between what we see and what we think we see, is central to her practice.
Shift Series (Horizontal / Vertical) departs from Partheniou’s approach of evoking everyday objects, operating more directly to address the artist’s longstanding interest in drawing attention to the act of seeing. Here the artist peels back some of the strategies of trickery she has deployed in the past to overtly offer up a painting and its double. The paintings are deliberately non-objective, eliminating common referents to focus attention on the surface treatment of the panels; Each painting is comprised of a 3/4” wooden panel, overlaid with a 1/8” board, which is displaced either horizontally, vertically, or diagonally to create the illusion of a semi-transparent and misaligned duplicate overlay. These layered, self-referential paintings visually defy the material properties of the board they are painted on; the edges of the panels are also painted to reinforce this optical play.