Paula Tončić: Flower, polyester, plastic, 15x8x91, orchid, white

Title ‘Flower, polyester, plastic, 15x8x91, orchid, white’ of the work by Paula Tončić leads us into the research subject: imitation of realities with artificial plants as the physical backbone.

The odd authenticity of artificial flowers (which in their shape evoke but do not necessarily copy nature) inspired the artist to reconceptualize, collect and catalog them. Referring to Foucault’s discourse that the history of nature is naming the visible, Tončić creates a representative opus of classified artificial plants: leaves belong to one category and are systematized by size, color, form; flowers are in another category systematized by the size and subjective experience.

Artist uses cataloging to deconstruct the object and promote its transformative power. Tončić perceives the distinctive indicators as visual elements and reconstructs reality in digital form. She uses 3D scans of artificial plants and manipulates them. In the process, plants mutate into Cyborgs – digitally enhanced variations freed from given physical limitations.

Furthermore, the artist layers narrative by transfusing visual medium into auditive. Digitally captured textures and forms of plants are translated in analog frequency which is then transformed into a digital medium via an interactive pad. Translations of the physical herbarium into multimedia digital form underline an array of possible interpretations.

Configuration of Cyborg-plants transforms one existence into a narrative that via immersing the audience changes. Physical elements of installation, like turf or interactive audio pad, invite the audience to interact with it: by focusing on details, or creating a personal sound composition, the perception of artwork shifts. The audience autonomy is present in the AR component in which the circle of intertwined virtual and embodied becomes liminal through the usage of personal screens. Layering and multimedia approaches enable the artist to focus on the concept of imitation of reality, destabilize rooted perception of „copies“ and raise the level of conscience about omnipresent digitalization.

Paula Tončić (1997.) has graduated from the Academy of fine arts in Zagreb, Department of animation and new media art. In her artworks, she deals with sound, video installations, documentation, and the classification of objects. Her work is based on collecting practices, constructing archives, or systematization. Underlined element of her work is grotesque and kitsch. She focuses on imitations of nature via man-made objects. Lives, works, and exhibits in Zagreb.

Curator: Maja Pavlinić
Design: Sara Pavleković Preis
Translation: Sara Tomac

The project is supported by: Gradski ured za kulturu Grada Zagreba i Ministarstvo kulture i medija Republike Hrvatske.
GMK is supported by: Zaklada Kultura nova i INA d.d.