By Eva Grinstein
Braga Menéndez Gallery's second-floor room, smaller in comparison to the first-floor one, has become one of the Buenos Aires' best art spaces: a not-too large white cube, ideal for experimental projects, isolated from noise and visual interference. There is something in this space that incites the excellent artists in the gallery's roster to develop chamber-like, well-rounded exhibitions. Such has been the case in recent years with memorable shows by Max Gomez Canlé and Javier Barilaro among others, and such is the case now with a new presentation by Karina Peisajovich, who moves from the large room - where she exhibited in 2006 - to the small one, condensing some of the ideas she has been working with in the last decade and taking them to a much greater level of sophistication.
Under the title Influyentes e influidos, Peisajovich (Buenos Aires, 1966) presents three sculptural works - to be precise, two wall reliefs and a floor-and-wall installation where light is the protagonist. In her case, what we have is a use of light fully traversed by the legacy of painting and, to a lesser degree, of film and theater. Indeed, influences criss-cross, but it soon ceases to matter where these works that could be seen as pure temporalities of color deployed in space come from, or where they are going.
Peisajovich's reliefs are frame-light sculptures in the shape of diamonds and squares, geometries that connect with the artist's precious work and become polished and forceful concept pieces here. Blue square, green diamond: figures that carry a century of art history and at the same time contemplate subtle, caring references to Peisajovich's own artistic universe. These relies take part, silently and from a privileged position, in the spectacle of the central work, which takes place in the middle of the exhibition space and projects into the back wall.
The central work is Máquina de hacer color , a device placed on the floor and based on three disks containing chromatic circles with twelve colors (red, orange, yellow, lime green, turquoise, cyan, blue, indigo, violet, magenta and pink). Each disk rotates thanks to a simple motor, and in turn the three of them, thus projecting on the wall the image of three circles in different sizes, connected at intersections, that change color at a slow, hypnotic rhythm. The mathematics of the work, as simple as it is dazzling, imply the production of more than 500.000 different color combinations, guaranteeing that the image will shift unendingly before the viewer's eyes.
Such systems of projecting light and moving images on the wall have been constant in Peisajovich's work since the late 1990's, a period when her two-dimensional paintings began to expand towards a world beyond the canvas. The use of cut-out shapes suspended in the air and the various effect of shadows, apparitions, mutations and vanishings achieved by infusing a dimerized light source, were the axis of a technique explored intensively by the artist in recent times as she creates veritable landscapes of lyrical geometry. With this new exhibition, Peisajovich reaches a complete degree of refinement: her repertoire is reduced and the possibilities for elevation are multiplied. In line with the great explorers of light, she develops optical sensations that take over space and assert themselves, with a certain delicious melancholy, in the perception of the observer.
Text published in Art Nexus #72, 2009