Katrin Fridriks’s Explosive Paintings and Prints Channel Genetics and Black Holes
Katrin Fridriks. Photo by Oliver Rath
Fridriks credits a wide range of inspirations in her work, including
Her technique is the product of a deep understanding of her materials and a little act of fate that happened in the studio, years ago. Due to an accident while mixing black and white paints, she stumbled upon a combination that resembled naturally occurring forms. In the paint, she saw landscapes as if they were viewed from a satellite—“mini landscapes, rivers, veins, trees, or other similar shapes and forms,” she explains. “It was so real, surreal, and yet so simple.” Today, she continues to utilize this effect, manipulating paint by stacking colors and tones, dragging them in great physical sweeps and splatters across the canvas like a futuristic
In recent series, Fridriks has incorporated extensive research, fusing perspectives on science and art. In an installation recently on view as part of the group exhibition “Personal Structures–Crossing Borders,” run concurrently with the 2015 Venice Biennale at the European Cultural Centre, she focused on the phenomenon of Stendhal Syndrome—a physical response to encountering artworks that can include rapid heartbeat or dizziness. In her work, Perception of the Stendhal Syndrome (2014/2015), Fridriks attempted to communicate experiences she has had while in the presence of works by great artists such as
Katrin Fridriks signing prints at Lazarides Editions. Courtesy Lazarides
A similar approach went into her new print, Royal Gene&Ethics, which is inspired by theories of genetics and the repercussions that genetic manipulation might hold for our future. The work is an eight-color screenprint, inspired by Fridriks’s painting of the same name, and was created in collaboration with Lazarides Editions in London. She has likened the work’s swirling composition to a black hole or the Big Bang. It is both a warning and a tribute to humanity’s potential.
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