The practice of a fair invites people outside of the gallery construct to view and buy art. A concentrated bazaar of impulse buys and judgement calls. In a way the artist becomes a performance artist, posturing and priming in an effort to sell, hoping to be submerged in a wave of retail and attention – a sea of eyes and profitable interest that translates into success.
I propose a live art painting that will be made during the fair that documents this ‘performance’. I want to paint a monochromatic seascape of eyes, with the number of eyes determined by the number of physical visits or virtual views I get during the fair. Simultaneously I will document and share the process on social media. The work will be approximately 3m x 2m and by finger painting.
The piece is meant to question what determines artistic success in a modern context. I am concerned with the notion of ‘fine art’ and why the epithet is necessary. Artists automatically uphold and support an attached judgement and how does this relate to a ‘fringe’ art society? Are there degrees of fine and in a fair are those degrees measured in profit margins or fame?
Anastasia Pather is a practicing, fine artist; receiving her B.F.A from the University of the Witwatersrand in 2010.
Pather has exhibited in numerous group exhibitions such as the ʻBeyond the Lineʼ project, a collaborative drawing exhibition, between the Goethe Institut and Wits Substation and the curated group show at the Turbine Art fair, ‘Fresh Produce’. Anastasia has also been a contributing artist to the ‘Khula Art’ Bag Project by Moniek van Erven and ‘Speeches from a White Cube’, a performance Art Project by Erin Bosenberg. In 2013 Pather funded, managed and ran the Art and Social Studio, a commercial art studio in 44 Stanley, Johannesburg. This sojourn acted as a living exhibition that intimately invited the public to observe, criticise and join her art making process.
Recently Pather has exhibited in a painter’s group exhibition at the Kalashnikov Galleri and announced as a semi-finalist in the SA Taxi Foundation Art Award in collaboration with Lizamore and Associates Gallery. Anastasia also co-curated and exhibited ‘On the Back of his Words’ during the Basha Uhuru festival art Constitution Hill.
I am a semi abstract, finger painter, a frequently distracted thinker and an uninterrupted female. My process allows paint to organically form shapes through its own viscosity and my body movements. I struggle to understand my role as an artist and if I deserve the title, and if not why I do not. I recognise that my work is indulgent, self absorbed and a more than likely derivative and probably a predictable exploration into my own purpose, sexuality, ethnicity, nationality and self but this art is for lovers, not others.