The materials that surround us are easily overlooked. The floors, walls and ceilings that demarcate the rooms we inhabit, the margins of our spaces, are made of marginal substances. Hiding behind finished surfaces, they act out their support in silence. Everywhere, their surfaces show signs of abrasion. The trauma marks the process of time and as the mundane happens to be uncanny, familiarity can be unexpected.
Anita Leisz made work using materials commonly found in interior furnishing and construction. Concerned with the potential of the locus, the notion of building and the functionality of artmaking, her works negotiate the realm of the possible. In many ways, this is achieved by a radical transparency, making known what is immediately visible and how that relates to its making, the work highlights ways of being together or separated, inside or outside, opposite or right in the middle of it. The visibility accrues through transparency. Consequently, the work is, aligned with Rancière’s thought, political.
The work exposes political contingence by annexing, dividing and liberating space. The objects that populate her rooms, the forms that occupy her surfaces and the rhythms she applies, create a viewing experiencing that corresponds with established ways of seeing things and, conversely, deviates from them. Like this, Anita Leisz establishes a specific visibility of her works and the spaces in between. I read this as an attempt to reconcile sensuality with the pursuit to allocate meaning. In consideration of different levels of speed (of making and seeing) and by appointing commonness and solitude, her works stand (or hang) equally autonomous and interdependent.
Eluding a singular definition, her work ascribes to multiple qualities as its intended efficacy occurs on site. Between their reduced shape and the suggestive sphere, the work’s idiosyncrasy unfolds. Hinting at a proposed functionality (eg. painting or sculpture), Anita Leisz obscures the potential of representation and, alternatively, abstraction. What is immediately seen, the slightest thing, marks the possible.
Leisz’ work continues to claim and reclaim different regions of existence as it shapes the spaces it inhabits. In doing so, the works showcase the idea of structure as a fragment and the fragment as a whole and, ultimately, as an image. In this sense, they behave like skeletons, scaffolding or frames but unlike such support structures, they are self-sufficient, they are not lacking anything. Instead, they enforce a visibility that gaps language, meaning and identity.
In a Duchampian sense, her work produces an infrathin visibility not unlike the warmth of a seat, which has just been left, is infrathin. The slightest difference manages to simultaneously destabilize and generate, and so, possibility qualifies truth.
– Tenzing Barshee
Curated by: Tenzing Barshee
Norma Mangione Gallery (press release)