The new project by Ivan Plusch is dedicated to the issue of immortality of body and soul. The moving bodies are executed in a manner of ‘leaking painting’, typical of the artist. They are longing to the permanency, willing to become eternal mechanisms with easily exchangeable details. And the invisible souls demand intermission and rest. Being inexorably associated with the bodies, they are trying to make aware of themselves, to detach the plastic matter of the bodies from the spatial conditions they happened to exist. However the solid material bodies are endlessly pulling the souls through time. They are less durable than souls and therefore long for self-destruction. As there is no strength in body without strength in soul.
The artist constructs a transparent but at the same time scrappy narrative about constancy and irregularity of this deformation in the gallery. His peculiar pseudo-corporeal images are coming from behind the corners of ordinary rooms, appearing in the lining between the angular passages, illustrated by being enframed as ‘paintings in paintings’. It seems that these are just shadows of the characters, casts of the souls, misty echoes of vague individuals who used to be high-grade personalities. Or on the contrary, we are facing some macabre nymphosis of the future souls, directed only at the sphere of life and they are just about to get out of their multyangular small cardboard rooms with cozy wallpapers telling about the feeling of external simplicity of life and modest comfort. ‘The paintings in paintings’ seem to be promising a clue, but require extra examination. And this is why the answer is not coming.
And inside the rooms the strange characters are transforming again and again into its reflexions and symbols condensed to the limit. This compression elicits the concept of the characters, almost transforming their shades into signs that need to be interpreted. These strange monsters seem to ask ‘Where did we come from?’ Who are we? Where are we going to? One may want to follow Gauguin’s words to start giving any explanations to these shadow-images: ‘A strange white bird represents the uselessness of the words’. ‘Do not believe your eyes! They can see only obstacles! To see means to understand. Realise ‘what you already know and you will learn how to fly’ – the seagull called Jonathan Livingstone is yelling on the other side of the time pole, disappearing in the skies. The outer energy has brought constant changes to the bodies, which are eliminating from their cozy world as a result. There and then they are bringing it back endowed with the same sense of anxiety.
In a short film by Peter Greenaway ‘Inside Rooms: 26 Bathrooms, London & Oxfordshire’ the homeliness of the characters shot in their own bathrooms tells about the most secret place here they can be alone with themselves and their relatives, can take off their masks and regain the harmony of soul and body. The inner rooms in the new series of works by Plusch are anti- bourgeois, transitional and hopeless. Even here, in suppressed corners of their habitations his characters can’t finв sanctuary can’t stop the whirling feeling. The outer space is catching them at a weak moment in their hovels, looking at them from behind of every corner, pressing from the wallpapers’ print, reminds about itself from the agly hooked picture. Its reproduction technologies guarantee them immortal bodies, but what follows after it is cheerless souls’ clichés.
How can one avoid the pressure of the outer space? Is it worth reconsidering itself, reviewing its ideals which were imperceptibly imposed by the environment? Is it reasonable to redistribute the energy, having reduced its expense due to the removal of the redundant? Gradually choose the way of your behavior in terms of life’s situations that we face? It seems that the solution is always in sensible choice that is always more reasonable than thing taught by parents, teachers or older friends. However will the alteration of the basis let improve out image being washed away by the time? Or the image is not quite important?
According to Don Juan’s advice one may either submit to life (by adjusting to its demands or by fighting it) or to state one’s life conditions in accordance with one’s plans and purposes. The process of life as a result of biological potency is ultimately different from life as a form of cognition activity. Only the conception of life process lets gain the energy, necessary for forming the future consequences of every decision during one’s life. The Plusch’s characters don’t know this kind of advice. Being crushed by the civilization, the demons of the inner rooms are posing the same questions again and again. And it’s no longer clear if these are the rooms that are keeping the ghosts locked up or these colorful spaces are the result of turbid mind of the characters abiding there.
The characters of Plusch’s work are like prisoners of time leaking by (that he always tries to grasp in his oeuvres). They reside in the limited space for a long time that is perceived as inner personal space. They die slowly and endlessly like Benedicion Alvarado, transforming into a humid mass, buried deep in the dictator’s chambers. There and then having revived, they can’t see the way out and isolate themselves. Endlessly peering into the walls around them, they can see their reflections and shadows and feel the burden of the bodies confined into the rooms of their lives. They are the victims of not their ideals, of catastrophes of other’s lives. They hoped that the achievement of comfort and happiness will be the guarantee of the inner satisfaction. However the survival of the body only prolongs the torments of the soul without any way out. And here are the secret messiahs coming outwards declaring itself in dissolute torrents. They are limitless like in Pasolini’s ‘120 days of Sodom’, although it’s being hidden in the inner rooms of their souls with the last bit of strength and is trying to escape the all-absorbing chaos.
Plusch is not casting the demons out of his characters. He is only tracing the endless toss of these strange transitional substances, making us think of the interpretations and draw parallels. The limited space is bordered and put into a rectangular of the painting. It makes the characters create artificial breaks whose traces hide in the paint leaking behind the corners. It seems however that any effort is vain. Only their permanent confusion distorts these subjects in a way that – as the artist says himself – ‘the concept of the private space transforms into a tactile feeling of your own body ’. This is the foresight of the new state of outer- and – in lieu being.
‘Will matter then be destroyed or not?’- The Savior said: ‘All nature, all formations, all creatures exist in and with one another, and they will be resolved again into their own roots. For the nature of matter is resolved into the roots of its own nature alone. He, who has ears to hear, let him hear.’ Peter said to him: ‘Since you have explained everything to us, tell us this also: What is the sin of the world?’ The Savior said: ‘There is no sin, but it is you who make sin when you do the things that are like the nature of adultery, which is called sin.’