Syntax Gallery is pleased to present a solo exhibition by Vasilisa Palianina. In her new project, the artist examines the shape of the cross by re-interpreting it through the concept of God-man and pagan animism. In a move from visual to haptic, Palianina creates textile 'creatures' intended to be part of the fauna.
Cross My Heart explores the universal symbolism of the cross and weaves the sacred with the earthly. Palianina speaks about the act of crossing things out as a means of rejuvenation, a stage that follows any lived experience, 'The cross brings together vertical and horizontal movements – this is an act of crossing out, a cancellation of past experience, the end of the Old Testament.'
The cross transforms into the body of a snake, blending the rational and the sensuous through temptation, 'In Christianity, the temptation of Christ is one of the proofs of his two natures – human and divine. But the world changed with the publishing of Darwin's theory of evolution as man became part of the animal kingdom, where survival of the fittest reigns. The same applies to symbols. And in this case, the cross has taken care of itself.'
Vasilisa Palianina does not urge us to decipher the meanings behind the objects but rather invites us to feel them. The artist allows the viewer to cut through the layers of familiar associations towards her unique subjective experience and leaves the outcome open to interpretation.