Self-portrait with Indoor Plant
7 March – 4 April 2015
Mind Set Art Center, Taipei, Taiwan
In the recent years of her practice, Micu has based her paintings on a collection of photographs from her immediate environment. The combination she proposes within this show comprises scenes from her daily life and what she calls “unlikely studio views” – images taken during various artistic endeavors she accommodates at home.
The show is a non-linear visual examination, a multifaceted presentation of self, spanning several years of the artist's life, which leads to an interest in growing plants. The spontaneous manifestation of this interest, disregarding the unsuitable existing conditions of periodic relocation, guided the artist in constructing a speculative yet reassuring scenario about things happening for a reason. By including works featuring plants in an elusive relation with the depicted surroundings, she goes beyond the realm of personal details towards articulating an empathetic connection with the audience. The viewer is encouraged to observe how past events archived as memories seem to reorganize into abridged narrations to make us feel comfortable recalling or sharing them.
The studio views bring forward one of Micu’s artistic guidelines by which art is in a symbiotic association with the routines of life. These images differ from what is usually recognized as a professional studio because she often works in improvised conditions. Emphasis is put on how space and other available resources are transformed and used to suit various needs, yet practicality is beside the point. She searches instead to maintain a state of visual awareness. In one scene, she posed for a camera set at an angle after she had been delimited with black paint a space to include herself and the unfinished paintings taped on the wall. This work conveys in a literal manner that the ideal painting studio is a larger foster image that must be kept in one’s mind.
Micu is as an artist who refrains from elaborations of solid, imaginative narratives, being satisfied with the residual coherence originated from the life references alone. She files images that appear unsolved, inexplicable or unaccomplished and, by painting them, she testifies her trust in their ability to achieve full potential, once parts of the show’s intricate connections formed between the succession of the works, the artist, and the viewers.