The first time I encountered Claudia Brăileanu’s works, was in Vienna at a gallery called Five Plus, located next to the Romanian Culture Institute. I can still remember the lines and the imbricated layers in one of her paintings, with the texture expressed there on the canvass focusing my attention and making me spend more time looking at it.
So, it came to me as no surprise when I visited her recent show titled ‘DEVIATIONS. LINE, PINK... BLACK SQUARE’ in Bucharest and saw her new works, which appear to be the result of a development of the idea of bringing together different layers. Only this time she embraced three-dimensionality, while keeping the traditional elements of painting – her medium of choice: she graduated from the painting department of the National University of Arts Bucharest with a BA and a MA – that is, while preserving the very canvas and the paint itself.
Claudia Brăileanu, Black Path. Photo Credit © Ana-Daniela Sultana
Claudia Brăileanu, Deviation (One). Photo Credit © Ana-Daniela Sultana
Curated by Eugen Rădescu – who is, besides the director of the Bucharest Biennale, the co-founder and co-publisher of the international journal for politics and culture Pavilion Magazine, a theoretician, a professor, and occasionally a DJ in some of the coolest bars and clubs in Bucharest – the solo featured a concise and unique selection of four new works by Claudia Brăileanu: Broken Pattern II, Broken Pattern VIII, Black Path and Deviation (One). The potential of the gallery’s minimalist design (a mix of white cube and a black box) was used in a lively manner by keeping the range of colours limited as well. That worked very well for the largest piece in the exhibition, ‘Deviation (One)’, which is a kind of site-specific painting installation. As for the subtitle chosen ‘LINE, PINK... BLACK SQUARE’, we have the cuts on the textile appearing as lines, pink as the predominant colour of the central work, and a black painting installation alluding to Malevich's Black Square.
Claudia Brăileanu, Broken Pattern II. Photo Credit © Ana-Daniela Sultana
Claudia Brăileanu, Broken Pattern VIII. Photo Credit © Ana-Daniela Sultana
Although the works were new, as I previously pointed out, they are part of a series the artist started a year ago, which is exploring – through the cutting and the juxtaposing of fabrics – a sort of metal and industrial visual effect.
‘DEVIATIONS. LINE, PINK... BLACK SQUARE’ was taking place between September 15 and October 6, 2017 at Mobius in Bucharest, a gallery which I mentioned before (see my review of Art Safari Bucharest 2017) regarding the display of the HD video installation ‘Allegoria Sacra’, the third part of ‘The Liminal Space Trilogy’ by the Russian collective AES+F.
Text and photos by Ana-Daniela Sultana
2 Mendeleev D.I. Street Bucharest , 010361, Sector 1, Romania
Ana-Daniela Sultana is a freelance curator born in Bucharest in the last decade of Communism, currently living and working in Bucharest and Vienna. She holds a MA in ecm - educating/curating/managing from the University of Applied Arts Vienna and is the co-founder of the MODELiER venue in Bucharest and the [ˈfæbrɪk] transdisciplinary organization in Vienna. She is collaborating with creative communities and cultural institutions; her aim is to promote new or lesser known artists and their endeavors.