Hellenica sculpture serie (2008-2010)

 Greece – Hellenica – is more than a physical place. Like most ancient cultures, it has produced universal lessons about human nature, lessons that transcend space and time. Greek myths have a particular format – the tragedy! the horror! – and I have elected to use them as a vehicle to explore representation methods in the form of three sculptures.
Thematically, the Hellenica serie is an investigation of thresholds, of boundaries, as presented by two myths – Narcissus and Orpheus & Eurydice – and a philosophical parable or idea – Plato’s allegory of The Cave. To me, they allude to the limitations of the ego/self (Narcissus), the world (The Cave) and love (Orpheus & Eurydice).
Aesthetically, how does one represent the essence of a story in sculpture form? In each sculpture, the protagonists are represented by the coloured plastic bottle-caps. Visually, the strongest element represents the threshold or boundary that is about to be crossed, or should be: the mirror as the water in Narcissus, the metal bangle as the entrance to The Cave, the wooden square frame as the last portal of hell in Orpheus & Eurydice.
As such, each sculpture is an abstraction of the story, and simultaneously its essence, in representing a specific, critical moment of the story (summaries follow below). In each sculpture, there is always this world and another, which we can only access by crossing a specific barrier or threshold, be it physical or mental/emotional.
Materials used are “poor” and imperfect, and this was a conscious choice – are we able to see beyond them?

About Maria GC Aragão

Architect, part-time lecturer, external examiner. I am interested in spaces of collective memory, the visual arts and architecture’s potential to enable change. I practice at the intersection between meaning, aesthetics and commerce. As an external examiner I look to architecture as an act of translation

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