#1 Giorgos Gerontides and Rachel Parry

During a year of restrictions and lockdowns, Giorgos Gerontides and Rachel Parry began unravelling their art-practices, collaborating digitally across boundaries and access points. Bringing their individual practices together during their physical residency (September 2021) in the Gonzo Unit project space, the resulting exhibition is a collectively uncanny and eclectic installation. We now invite the viewer into the space to explore the duo’s cluster of ‘islands’ that embrace ritualised un-fiction traces inside sculpture, performance art, video, and sound. 

Giorgos Gerontides’ collections function exactly in the reverse; they produce a very precise system of preserving and databasing objects that would otherwise be forgotten or lost and which serve to portray a specific character and narrate their story. In the installations made during the residency we come across the enigmatic collector. The protagonist is storing his uniforms here and he displays part of his collection of curious objects. 

Gerontides’ references are found in the way museums and even their predecessors, the sixteenth century Wunderkabinetts, shape our understanding of history, the ways we accumulate knowledge and perceive the natural world. Appropriating archaeological and other scientific methods of collecting, ordering and displaying objects, Gerontidis creates works that challenge the distinctions between an ‘objective’ (rational) view of the world and a more ‘subjective’ (irrational) version guided by his imagination – and thus questioning the authoritative role and weight of scientific knowledge in contemporary society.

Rachel Parry’s ongoing project ‘Malfunctioning Perfectly’ embraces new technology to explore disability and performance of the rawness of monstrous grotesque reclaimed. It specifically addresses neurodiversity and the artist’s experiences of living with ADHD (Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder), Autism and hidden bodily disabilities. Working with various AI (Artificial intelligence), Parry has been collaborating with the bots to teach them how to see art, the artist’s body, and how to interpret performance of liveness. Resulting in a range of media, sculptures, video art, and performance. Ongoing research is funded by the Arts Council England. 

Also showing as part of ‘Malfunctioning Perfectly’ is videowork C/our/Rage which was commissioned and created for the “Power: Freedom to Create” exhibition at the National Justice Museum, Nottingham, UK. Made during the pandemic, 2020-2021 Parry had a few days in the cells and the rest was performed outside. Those weeks highlighted a lot of sexual assault and domestic violence in the media and public conversations. A heart and a penis candle were burned for every survivor, whilst Parry self soothed their own survival.

Exhibition 17 – 26 September 2021, Tuesday – Friday 1pm – 9pm, Saturday and Sunday 12pm – 7pm, Gonzo Unit, Siggrou 24 Thessaloniki

#1 Γιώργος Γεροντίδης και Rachel Parry

Περιμένετε μια εκλεκτική, μυστηριώδη εγκατάσταση που αγκαλιάζει τελετουργικά ίχνη μέσα στη γλυπτική, την περφόρμανς, το βίντεο και τον ήχο, απομυθοποιώντας τα.

Ο Γεροντίδης, από την Κύπρο και η Parry, από την Βρετανία, έχουν ξεδιπλώσει τις τεχνικές τους, συνεργαζόμενοι ψηφιακά πέρα από τα σύνορα και τα σημεία πρόσβασης, σε διάστημα ενός έτους περιορισμών και αποκλεισμών λόγω Covid19. Τώρα θα συναντηθούν στη Θεσσαλονίκη, για να ξαναχτίσουν από την αρχή, και να εξερευνήσουν πώς μπορεί να εμφανιστεί μια συνεργατική έκθεση στον πραγματικό χώρο της ζωής, να αναπνεύσει και να εξερευνήσει τη συνέχεια αυτών των συζητήσεων που έχουν ξεκινήσει γύρω από την τέχνη. Μετά από την φυσική παραμονή και τη συνεργασία τους στο χώρο για δύο εβδομάδες, η έκθεση με τα έργα που θα προκύψουν από αυτήν θα είναι ανοιχτή για το κοινό από τις 17 Σεπτεμβρίου.

Αυτό είναι το πρώτο πρότζεκτ από μια σειρά συνεργασιών που συνδέουν Έλληνες και Βρετανούς καλλιτέχνες μέσω της εικονικής και της φυσικής τους παραμονής και εργασίας στη Θεσσαλονίκη.

Έκθεση 17 – 26 Σεπτεμβρίου 2021, Τρίτη – Παρασκευή 1 μ.μ. – 9 μ.μ. Σάββατο και Κυριακή 12 μ.μ. – 7 μ.μ. Gonzo Unit, Συγγρού 24, Θεσσαλονίκη

Artist Biographies:

Giorgos Gerontides is a Cypriot artist born in Athens in 1987. His work combines real and fictional elements, producing systems of collecting, preserving, and archiving objects in order to outline characters and tell a story. Over the last decade, Gerontides has exhibited widely in Greece and across Europe, including solo exhibitions in Thessaloniki and Madrid, and participation in several European residencies. He currently lives and works in Thessaloniki and Cyprus. 

https://giorgosgerontides.wixsite.com/work

Rachel Parry, born in Nottingham, UK, is an interdisciplinary artist working in live, performance, and digital arts. As a cultural producer, Parry is the founding director of the performance art platform Little Wolf Parade and a founding member of art collective of Guerilla Art Lab which seeks to take over space and create safe(r) spaces for those identifying as neurodivergent and gender/queer. Parry is also a member of Near Now creative technology studios at the Broadway Media Centre in Nottingham. Parry has performed widely across the UK, US, and in Europe. Their recent work includes performances for the Venice International Performance Art Week (2020). https://www.instagram.com/rachelparryartist/