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MASKED MAN & THE LOST DOG
"You reach a moment in life when, among the people you have known, the dead outnumber the living. And the mind refuses to accept more faces, more expressions: on every new face you encounter, it prints the old forms, for each one it finds the most suitable mask." writes Marco Polo upon entering the city of Adelma. For him, Adelma is a foreign city, but the faces all bare the familiar resemblance. What happens next, is a game of recognition where each one tries to recognize a common face. Still, one constantly fails to see its truthiness. What is a true face, a true nature, after all: is it a common make-up of genes, neurons, muscles, skeletons, ecosystems and evolution, which allows masks to be classed in the same humanity? Is the world of nature our common world, does its perceived unity provides a common denominator? Or is it more complex than that, a constant negotiation of what identity or nature is?
Wild animal and/or human? organism and/or environment? dog and/or car?
Identity becomes a loop of images, in Michael Etzensperger's Mask series. One finds it impossible to reach the origin through overlapped, multiplied, manipulated cultures.
Hidden in the folds of Kulturfolger lie Ann Phelan's Paintings discreet and intimate. Slowly move beyond the realm of the symbolic, they instead act as a mystical tool of natures beyond reason.
Both operate in a similar manner, aware of the necessity of foundation myths in order to survive.