Melanie Hill "Occupy time"

Betty Fotiou "Nightly"

Private view Saturday 14 December 2013

14 December 2013 - 22 February 2014
Thursday - Saturday 12:00 to 18:00

Vamiali's gallery features, from December 14 through February 22, new paintings by Betty Fotiou and new works by Melanie Hill.

Τhe small-scale monochromatic portraits and landscapes by Betty Fotiou, titled "Nightly, are airy and ethereal, almost dreamy, like a blurry trace onto the canvas. In a constant search for erasing the writing and the paint, she captures and performs only the minimum. Portraits of Fotiou are imaginary, the depicted persons are not real, is a combination of imagination, memory, familiar faces and well-known figures from history. In each work, there is a hidden detail, a hidden aspect in order to balance between a decisive gesture and a recurrence of multiple levels of execution on the surface. Her paintings are associative and characterized by contrasts and unexpected references. Innuendoes and subtle gestures coexist with representations and make equal use of different influences from contemporary art language. The landscapes’ excerpts are "essential” and "intangible" and the representation of the portrait is often either "under construction" or already in decline. In the visual world of Fotiou, meaning does not really matter, the works are like a walk in the night, leaving all possibilities optionally open, while the final result is dark and almost transparent.

Melanie Hill presents works, from the series entitled "Thin threads", where she collects papers from different sources (journals, notebooks, comics) and embroiders them with abstract and unexpected shapes and patterns, during her summer holidays in summer camps. The embroidered papers have references to the ephemeral and the duration, the ritual, the spirituality and the repetition. In the works titled "Occupy time", she uses elements of the domino game in order to describe the ways in which we allocate leisure time, select every "pleasant" activity and entertainment, but also the possible compalsion could be involved in the phrase "leisure time has to be a factor of creativity”. On the gallery's basement, she puts in the middle of the space, a construction made of plastic, fabric and timber, resembling a camping tent, an ephemeral sculpture, anthropometric unequal in size. Next to it, a thin wooden lath titled "The stick" looks like joining the floor to ceiling in a funny way, as a joke. It seems like it penetrates the ceiling and reappears on the gallery's ground floor. The need to shift the meaning of each traditionally “feminine" activity is reflected in the works of Hill, as a time pause between hobby and occupation.

Betty Fotiou was born in Athens in 1982. Lives and works in London.

Melanie Hill was born in Wellington, New Zealand, lives and works in London. From 2003 to 2010, she was a member of the art collective Group Mel-air. Their works have been shown worldwide including Vamiali's, Deste Foundation, ICA (London), Open Space (Cologne) and belong to private collections in Greece and abroad.

Betty Fotiou, "Nightly", installation view, ground floor

Betty Fotiou, "Nightly" and Melanie Hill, "The stick", installation view, ground floor

Betty Fotiou, "Nightly" and Melanie Hill, "Occupy time", installation view, ground floor

Melanie Hill, "Occupy time", installation view, ground floor

Betty Fotiou, "Nightly" and Melanie Hill, "Thin threads" & "Occupy time", installation view, ground floor

Melanie Hill, "Thin threads", 2012, embroidery on found paper, 20x30cm each

Melanie Hill, "Occupy time", 2013, handmade domino, wood, paint

Betty Fotiou, "Nightly", 2013, acrylic on canvas, 20x20 cm each

Betty Fotiou, "Nightly", 2013, acrylic on canvas, 35x45 cm each

Melanie Hill, "Occupy time" & "The stick", 2013, mixed media, installation view, basement

Melanie Hill, "The stick" and Betty Fotiou, "Nightly", installation view, basement