Viktória Revická: How Much the Roots Twist under the Asphalt

Opening: 14. 12. 2023 at 6PM
Exhibition duration: 15. 12. 2023 – 21. 4. 2024
Curator: Štefánia Ďuricová
Space C, Hlavná 27, Košice

Viktória Revická's performance explores the interconnectedness of the human and non-human worlds, challenging the dichotomy between "nature" and "culture". The choreography, involving three performers, unfolds against the backdrop of a poetic text conceived by the author. This text guides the audience into personal contemplation of our relationship with the living and non-living world. Tones, voices and frequencies, accompanied by music, progressively escalate and fluctuate, interwoven with quiet moments, gentle melodies and intimate reflections. These elements are complemented by movements that create a palpable tension. The horizontality of the choreography subverts the inherent  verticality of the human figure, transforming this embodied representation of  the movement of tree roots  into a holistic experience of natural forces. Human experience intertwines with the intricate dynamics of the natural world, fostering a novel form of participation and ecological awareness. To grasp the principle of non-human actors, we must release the need to label things and instead begin to sense them.

How Much the Roots Twist under the Asphalt urges us to slow down, linger in-between time, and strengthen our ability to perceive and observe. Poetically blurring the boundaries and distinctions between human and non-human entities, it contemplates life beneath our cities and the movement of roots under the asphalt.  Empathetically conceived, this exhibition encourages its audience to understand and imagine the landscape from the perspective of subterranean living forms.

While recent research has proven that trees communicate through electro-chemical impulses, some scientists have taken this further, asserting that forests possess their own social systems of communication and support. So many people living and working in urban environments suffer from the psychological and somatic pressures of city-life, and often seek the relief of regeneration, respite and renewal in the face of such stresses. . This can be achieved by connecting with the surrounding environment, the original teacher and healer, provided we are open and prepared for an active dialogue. Understanding the diverse dynamics and interactions of an ecosystem allows us to witness how organisms silently shape the macro-environment. The time marked by continuous mutational processes, governed by biological growth of organisms, stands in stark contrast to our era of Great Acceleration.

The inherent awkwardness and incongruity of spectators as passive observers elicits reflection on the dominant position of humans in the Anthropocene. The exhibition supports the humorous aspect of human thinking and the playfulness with which the artist indirectly addresses the climate crisis and the pervasive anxiety this global situation evokes., Rather than emphasise the negative, Revická seeks forms of awareness: this contemplative installation thus nurtures consciousness and multi-sensory perception, leading to a healing relationship with our surroundings.

Viktória Revická, a graduate of the Academy of Fine Arts in Bratislava, primarily engages with performativity in her work. She also explores authorial text, video, food, fermentation and plants. Her creative approach reflects an interest in the relationship to the environment, ecology, intuition, fermentation processes, and the art of slowing down. Leveraging the vulnerability of living and non-living surroundings, her work conveys visual metaphors within a distinctive vocabulary that speaks to us all.

Performerky a performer / Performers: Soňa Kúdeľová, Viktória Revická, Michal Zoller

Concept: Viktória Revická 

Music: Dáša Buliková 

Mix:  Adam Badí Donoval

Camera and Sound: Juraj Starovecký

Costumes: Matej Grznár 

Styling: Petra Nela Pučeková

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