Saturday 13.5 at 4pm at Arkadia: Sea-change, an exhibit by Irina Valkova and Ian Bourgeot

You are most welcome to visit us at / Arkadia International Bookshop and “like” us if indeed you do!

Dear friend of Arkadia,

You are invited to Sea-change, an exhibit by Irina Valkova and Ian Bourgeot, on Saturday 13.5 at 4pm at Arkadia (Nervanderinkatu 11)

The exhibit will open Saturday 13.5 at 4pm and close Saturday 27.5 at 6pm.

Sea-change by Irina Valkova and Ian Bourgeot

This exhibition aspires to reflect upon the idea of drastic change by means of a single, global, living substance. Water becomes an object of choice because it resists realistic depiction, which encourages other expressive approaches to work together on bridging this gap. Water is also fluid enough to fill different social and natural frames, single-handedly producing and reflecting (upon) diverse transitions in life.

Working from two different corners of Europe and representing two seemingly disparate artistic traditions, Irina and Ian tried to gloss over this distance by maintaining a strong interest in each other’s ways of seeing and showing things.

Warm regards,

Entrance is free but a donation of €3 (or more!) to fund the event is suggested and would be most welcome. If you have no loose change or coins we gladly accept payment via Visa Electron or Mastercard etc. !

Irina Valkova
, born in Russia in 1982, lives and works in Aarhus (Denmark). She studied at Art Center College of Design (Los Angeles, CA), Smolny College of Liberal Arts and Sciences (Saint-Petersburg), majoring in Fine Art Media and System Theory, and received her Bachelor and Master Degrees in Fine Arts from Weissensee School of Art (Berlin, Germany) in 2012-2013.

In most of her projects, the artist puts into question the notion of authorship, looking for alternatives to the Romantic style of self-expression. Trying to avoid the role of the omnipotent creator, Irina Valkova assumes the position of a naive “inventor of the wheel”: unlike standard “ready-mades”, her “hand-mades” emerge spontaneously, defying rules and forfeiting any prior technical knowledge. The imperfect shapes and skewed perspectives depict the “natural” way of seeing art before instruction and abstraction. They convey prosaic attitudes of a general viewer to art and beauty based on palpable properties of familiar objects.

Ian Bourgeot
was born in London in 1962. He is the founder and owner of Arkadia International Bookshop in Helsinki.

The art of Ian Bourgeot beguiles with casual eloquence and subtle richness. It can strike the viewer as surprisingly straightforward, as possessing a kind of primordial purity. Or an elusive context or “meaning”, perhaps, that has been distilled into an abstract looseness. It is attracted to the suspended, impenetrable moment – of reverie; of grief, shock or ennui. Paintings often convey a haunting openness, thanks to an impression of apparently opposing qualities. Bareness and inscrutability, fact and enigma, clarity and haze, precision and suggestion, intimacy and detachment, peace and estrangement, lushness and simplicity. Bourgeot’s works resist reductive interpretation. Rather, their generous spaciousness entices the viewer into elaborating a narrative or mood, or merely savouring a hush they emanate. Titles, plainly descriptive or possible fragments of story or poem, tantalize. What backstory floats beyond the frame? How to define the ambience? Troubling? Lulling? Playful? The evocative force of Bourgeot’s work appears to stem from a deep meditative curiosity and masterful melding of spontaneous lightness and restraint. Text by: Kristel Thornell