Michalis Charalambous, In praise of light, digital print, (ceramic, gold, steel analogue imprints), 2020.
Michalis Charalambous, In praise of light, HD Video: 02:39min, 2020.
In Praise of Light
Through his practice, Michalis Charalambous explores the boundaries between space, body, object and identity, by making use of digital technologies and traditional media. In this work, he examines the contradictory terms of analogue and digital, physical and virtual environment, material and immaterial.
His research takes references from ancient vessels merged with avant-garde forms, which are materialized in brand-new, hybrid sculptures, defined by poetic narratives. He examines possible forms by combining means of 3D software and analogue photography techniques.
Michalis’s work aims to interpret a non-specific context imbued with symbolisms. He proposes different ways of touching a vessel to interpret interactions of the post-human, the object and the space. By using the method of “still life photography”, he ascribes alternative meanings to the context of each image. In this way, photography is elevated to a medium of cultural and political significance, more than just an ordinary scientific tool.
Michalis creates settings as if they were theatre or film sets, influenced by German Expressionist Cinematography and exuding dramatic ambiences, produced by the strong contrasts of light and shadow. The title references Junichiro Tanizaki's famous book "In Praise of Shadows" (1933), which discusses the various meanings of beauty and aesthetics produced by the semi-lit and shadowed spaces contained in a traditional Japanese house. The artist follows the example of Tanizaki to discover light in its different scales and forms. Isolated in his personal studio, he studies how light converses with space and, in particular, with the hybrid vessels.