Silas Inoue: MARATHON OF THE SPIRITUAL APE
Marathon of the Spiritual Ape
In Marathon of the Spiritual Ape, Silas Inoue presents a comprehensive production of new works. Through sculptures, drawings, and watercolours, the exhibition unfolds various associations to the general need of humanity to conquer, compete and exceed oneself. Out of these tendencies, the works evolves around trophies, and their representation of status and cultural affiliations. Simultaneously the exhibition is subject for a contemplating work process, dedicated to various thought experiments, and a meditative absorption into the material.
The first room in the exhibition consist of trophy-like sculptures placed on shelves in different levels. This installation is inspired by the kitsch aesthetic that often characterize shops selling sport trophies. The sculptures are shaped in self-hardening ceramics, with a cracked surface and imitated patina that makes them look old and shabby, like amphoras of antiquity. In this way the shape, and shinny appearance of sport trophies gets transformed, into dusty abstractions of mans disposition to compete for status and power.
The second room of the exhibition displays an ornamented disco ball, which is made of bits and pieces of 13 karate trophies, that the artist has won in tournaments over a span of years, and now forms a cut up mosaic of reflection. The function of the trophies as signifiers of victory, and their history of a personal striving towards physical and mental strength, are then shattered in a humoristic gesture to the more inclusive and social narrative of dancing. The disco ball is surrounded by drawings, and watercolour works, that in a similar way dissolves symbols of victory and status. Emblems and the fur and skin of exotic animals, are transformed into more ambiguous and mystical motifs, and in the repetition of shapes, patterns and details, dreamlike land- and cityscapes emerges. In Marathon of the Spiritual Ape, the human aspiration to rise within the social order has thus become subject to a contemplating move into the unstructured, and illusory world of the unconsciousness.