The constructions comprising the group Dragon kite by Pantelis Chandris, created with black silk tissue paper and fiberglass rods, exude an imaginary atmosphere defined by its symbolic or allegorical content. The hybrid, zoomorphic sculpture, made of paper and bronze sheet, with its robust modular spine, dorsal scales, and serpentine tail, constitutes the core element of the composition, complemented by four large constructions titled Vertigo 1, 2, 3, 4. These dark allegories of flying contraptions, which are either balancing on the verge of destruction, or placed in a sequence or succession, are suspended in various optical perspectives, morphologically resembling the structure of early flying machines, kites and tents, while also clearly referring to organic forms and human anatomy.
Chandris isolates a poetic phrase by surrealist Jean Cocteau ("For the gods to really enjoy themselves, their victim must fall from a great height") to create these specific works and comment on power relationships, on divine intervention, and on the precariousness of existence. The viewer stands in front of a unit of constructions that comprise a vision, delusion or illusion of another world, of a dystopic imaginary environment, in which twirling other-worldly beings are subjected to the decay produced by their dizzying movement, perhaps shortly before, or after their fatal collision.
The artist appropriates the archetypal symbolisms of the rise and fall to convey the surrealist struggle for life and art; the agony of the ephemeral, enigmatic and tragic fate; the desire for the unfulfilled; the loss of bearings and the spatial disorientation one suffers as one frantically looks for a way out.
The inventive use of malleable paper, the familiar, fragile surface on which he captures –using the technical process of casting– traces of existence and signs of decay (like a memento mori) reveal the mortality and the ephemeral nature of the human condition, in a universe governed by the powers of randomness and eternal fluidity.
MOMus-Museum of Contemporary Art-Macedonian Museum of Contemporary Art and State Museum of Contemporary Art Collections