Dimitris Gketsis and the Iridescence of Personal Experience
Young Greek artist Dimitris Gketsis has just graduated from the Athens School of Fine Arts, and his work combines sculpture and installation with imagery sourced online. His first solo show, Attempt vol. I: Iridescent Lover Knife, Dimitris Gketsis presents a film together with a series of installations at the also young project space WE ARE BUD in Metaxourgeio. In the following interview the artist talks about the work presented at the exhibition and his recent practice in general.
Interview by Kiriakos Spirou
Photo courtesy the artist
For me, what stands out the most in your work up to now are your sculptures of animals sleeping. Can you tell me a few words about them?
To begin with, newborn animals are a kind of revival of a forgotten childhood; something that we leave behind in our adult life—innocence, perhaps, that sweet and tender something you feel when you see them and you want to pet them and touch them. Basically, in these works I compose a new reality from scratch, wanting to question the constants of perception and logic. Therefore where I end up is that these works relate to visual perception and the ways the body reacts to the conditions I define, creating a kind of psychographic situation (thus treating my project more like an experiment towards the viewer), offering an experience where each person lives and perceives in their own way.
Do you think that this kind of personal experience, this subjective reading, in a way isolates the individual from the rest of the world?
I believe that it’s a success [for the work] when a relationship between the viewer and the work emerges, whatever that is—even more so when the audience interacts with the work, which is a challenge for me. Regarding the isolation you mention, I understand this more as a point of thought, or as transporting the viewer in a new reality, creating a more powerful relationship between the viewer and the work.
To what extend do you use or draw from the internet for your work, and in which ways?
The internet and new media are at the core of my practice, as it is evident in my work where material and concept come from the digital world. So the internet, through its very wide framework, becomes an essential tool for materialising and extracting forms—using it as a means of approaching and as a tool for drawing information, through which I can produce new images.
Please describe what we are going to see at your exhibition at WE ARE BUD.
The main axis of my exhibition is a film I created and the whole exhibition revolves around it; at the same time the installations in the exhibition spaces are more like results from the film or like backstage situations caught in mid-air, as if I’m revealing more information about the film’s plot and answering different questions that arise from the film itself.
What exactly is this “attempt” you refer to on the exhibition title?
The word “attempt” I used more in the sense of something that is attempted for the first time. It’s a first attempt, a first experiment for my first solo exhibition. With all my collaborators and my curator Georgia Eleni Tigkinagka, we exhibit in a very new space. So it’s a first attempt for all of us to present something especially daring to the Athenian audience and beyond.
I would like to take this opportunity to thank Alexandra Koumantaki for the sound design, Gabriela Tsingkas for the video editing and Yiannis Voulgaris for his overall help. Lastly, I would like to thank We Are Bud for their trust in my work.
The exhibition Attempt Vol.1: Iridescent Lover Knife is presented at the project space of WE ARE BUD (Millerou 43, Metaksourgio, Athens) from 11 – 23 July 2017.