There are much nicer planets in the universe than Earth
curated by Maria Vassileva
24.03.2022 - 21.04.2022
Stanimir Genov. Ridiculous Accident, 2021, acrylic and oil on canvas, 140 x 170 cm
Stanimir Genov. Vacation Spot, 2021, acrylic and oil on canvas, 190 x 170 cm
Stanimir Genov. Dullness remains in the past, 2022, acrylic and oil on canvas, 440 x 288 cm
Stanimir Genov. There are only flowers, 2022, acrylic and oil on canvas, 170 x 140 cm
Stanimir Genov. There is nothing funny, 2022, acrylic and oil on canvas, 190 x 170 cm
Stanimir Genov. Three nations attack an alien civilization, 2021, acrylic and oil on canvas, 195 x 270 cm
Stanimir Genov. Very sad, 2022, acrylic and oil on canvas, 288 x 288 cm
Stanimir Genov. The same people in different places, 2021, acrylic and oil on canvas, 40 x 38 cm
Stanimir Genov. The same people in different places, 2021, acrylic and oil on canvas, 46 x 42 cm
Stanimir Genov is an artist focused on his personal experiences, which – in his own words – he wants to relive through the painting process rather than describe. This “repetition” of experience enables him to disrupt the familiar course of things and enter new territories. It is this process of letting go of accumulated thoughts and emotions that turn into other thoughts and emotions that is the basis of Stanimir Genov’s amusing “play” with the matter of painting.
In the current exhibition “There are much nicer planets in the universe than Earth”, prepared in the period 2021-2022 especially for Structura Gallery, he again focuses on a particular theme that preoccupies him – the increasingly frequent speculation about life on other planets as a possible escape from our failed mission on Earth.
From the media we are constantly inundated with information about the ambitious races of extraplanetary rich people to conquer space. Billions worth of rockets are being launched, and gigantic marketing campaigns are turning desolate Mars into a desirable destination for excursions and exodus. Reality is replaced with fantasies that we have the capacity for such a challenge.
For Stanimir Genov, focusing on this probability weakens the sense of responsibility that humanity must assume. The claim to extraterrestrial vastness seems like a complete farce against the backdrop of millennia of failure to deal with elemental problems here on Earth, the result of our collective hubris.
The works in this series deal with our potential for alien conquest and the comfort levels that future alien settlements will achieve. It is the level of comfort that is a very curious aspect of the notion of living in an alien environment. It’s interesting that as organisms that can comprehend how vulnerable they are, we still tend to neglect the unimaginable discomfort that accompanies inhabiting an environment incompatible with life, in which getting beaten up outside of a high-tech shelter or suit is impossible. The notion of this hyper-anxiety, which runs through sensations such as claustrophobia, insecurity and powerlessness, leads the artist into constructing images that portray his perception of our abstract alien existence. Of course, without excluding all the romance that accompanies everything beyond the exosphere.
Stanimir Genov’s works necessarily contain a dose of irony and mockery of our own aspirations and ambitions. They are most clearly manifested in the titles, which are an important part of the works: ‘Ridiculous accident’, ‘Vacation spot’, ‘Nothing is funny’, ‘There are only flowers’, ‘Same people in different context, ‘Very sad’, ‘Stupidity is a thing of the past’, ‘Three nations attack an alien civilization’, including the title of the exhibition itself.
Stanimir Genov (b. 1982 in Sofia) has a BA in Painting from the National Academy of Arts in Sofia (2002-2006) and a MA (2016-2018). In the period 2007–2012, he was primarily interested in installation, video and sound. In 2012 he returned to painting as his main medium. So far, his work has been presented in numerous solo shows: „Excuse Me“ (2008 Gallery Pistolet, curated by Leda Ekimova, Sofia), „Clear!“ (2011 The Fridge, curated by Yovo Panchev, Sofia), „Paintings“ (2012 Gallery Yuzina, curated by Yovo Panchev, Sofia), „Exhibition“ (2015 Galley “Vladimir Dimitrov – Maystora”, Kyustendil, Bulgaria), „Avalanche” (2016 Contemporary Space, curated by Yovo Panchev, Varna, Bulgaria ), „Bouquet“ (2017 Vaska Emanuilova Gallery, curated by Daniela Radeva, Sofia) and “Some thoughts doesn’t move” (2018, Gallery Cu29, Plovdiv, Bulgaria), “Plane” (2019 Contemporary Space, curated by Yovo Panchev, Varna, Bulgaria ), “How it was” (2021, Gallery Depoo, Sofia). In addition, Stanimir Genov has participated in a number of group exhibitions, like „Process in Progress“ (2015 Gallery Baeckerstrasse 4, Curated by Vessela Nozharova, Vienna, Austria), „Caution: Wet Paint!“ (2015 Sofia City Art Gallery, curated by Maria Vassileva, Daniela Radeva, Vladiya Mihaylova, Sofia), „Shifting Layers / Young Art at the Museum“ (2017 Sofia City Art Gallery, curated by Vladiya Mihaylova, Sofia) and „Forms of Coexistence” (2017 Structura Gallery, curated by Maria Vassileva, Sofia).
Supported by the Creative Initiatives Programme of the National Culture Fund.