Anat Ebgi is pleased to announce Remember where we started out, a solo exhibition by Hungarian artist Mónika Kárándi. The exhibition will be on view from June 3 through July 15, 2023 at 4859 Fountain Avenue. An opening reception will take place at 4859 Fountain Avenue on Saturday, June 3 from 2 – 5 pm.
Mónika Kárándi’s paintings are characterized by the artist’s connection to transcendent nature, which she describes as “vitalizing and stifling at the same time.” The exhibition title Remember where we started out—implies a togetherness, a collective search to understand our present through examining our shared origins. This phrase is lifted from a lyric by electronic band Hot Chip. Kárándi frequently sources her titles from music lyrics as a way to draw upon the poetry of language to visualize abstract emotions and ideas.
Kárándi proceeds in search of new shapes and new poses. Each work examines the extension of the body to the sky, while simultaneously rooting it to the earth. Her paintings depict hair-like bodies, which morph and develop into different iterations of themselves. The tendril-esque forms were born through the fusion of human figures with an ancient desert plant called Welwitschia Mirabillis. These living fossils existed during the time of dinosaurs and can survive for 1500-2000 years. Growing continuously and slowly, the two-leafed specimen pretends, as it is torn with increasing age, to have several leaves, or even heaps of leaves, wearing their frazzled histories as markers of time and fortitude. They operate in the paintings as symbols of timelessness and in joining them together—plant and human, Kárándi presents an ideal act of endurance and survival. She explains, “even if I did separate them, they would again and again long to merge with each other.”
The figures in Kárándi’s paintings appear tethered to the ground. Earth-bound woodland creatures, or forest dwellers, whose spirits are quickened by sky, water, and earth. Rendered through long sweeping gestures and liquid in their movements, they frolic, bathe, and lounge across the canvases. Captured in landscapes situated in seemingly tropical and imaginary oases. The artist explains that they “emerge from memories of travels to southern Mediterranean places.” These precious visitations trigger the desire to return to and reimagine them through her paintings.
Describing something, while simultaneously searching for it, Kárándi articulates a vision of a parallel world where hills seem as soft as bodies, and sky and water like colorful pieces of silk, where plants and humans have merged into a joint creation. The exhibition conjures allegorical narratives on love, protection, and pleasure derived simply from experiencing life.
Mónika Kárándi (b. 1990, Debrecen, Hungary) received her degree from the Hungarian University of Fine Arts, Budapest, HU; and studied at Universidad de Castilla-La Mancha, Cuenca, ES and Eszterhazy Karoly University of Applied Sciences, Eger, HU. Recent solo exhibitions include I come home in the morning light, Ojiri Gallery, London, UK; Just a perfect day! with Attila Bagi, Longtermhandstand, HU; I saw you in a dream, Ojiri Gallery, London, UK; Stunning Beaches, Hungarian Consulate in London; Splash, Art Kartell Project Space, Budapest, HU; Blue Lagoon, Telep Galéria, Budapest, HU; Dancing in the moonlight, Klauzál13, Budapest, HU; and Lagoon, PINCE Project, Budapest, HU. Kárándi has also exhibited wildly in group exhibitions including Anat Ebgi, Los Angeles, CA; Torula, Győr, HU; Erika Deák Gallery, Budapest, HU; DoubleQ Gallery, Hong Kong; K11, Budapest, HU; Nicodim Gallery, Los Angeles, CA; and WOAW Gallery, Hong Kong, among many others. Kárándi lives and works in Budapest, Hungary.