Andrew Roth is pleased to present TWO, an exhibition of 47 drawings by Georgia Sagri. Often created as sketches or preliminary studies for her performances (ways to crystallize, condense, and image ideas; ways to predict, project, and propose what might come), Sagri’s drawings frequently are made after the fact of performance as well, functioning as a quasi-therapeutic means of processing actions and events.
Coming both before and after then, these drawings also stand apart, taking place in their own time, and possessing a life independent from the performances to which they are ostensibly tied. One cannot reduce these drawings to either scores or reports; indeed, Sagri’s work at large attempts to break down binaries such as cause and effect.
Less pulling on art history than haunted by it, the drawings depict a cast of characters derived from a Surrealist pantheon—one thinks of the fantastic spindly scenes of Leonora Carrington, the architectural bodies of Louise Bourgeois, the compacted corpses of Hans Bellmer—that has subsequently been processed through a heavy-metal aesthetic of angst and gloom and which also nods to the gothic daintiness of some high school students and Edward Gorey. In this sense, the apparently unskilled hand that animates the page is also key to the effect of its marks. It is a jumpy hand that gives way to an erratic aesthetic: disembodied-heads-on-sticks; a colorful bird that appears to have flown out of the expressionist world of the CoBrA artist Karel Appel.
Georgia Sagri was born in Athens in 1979. Her work was featured in the 2012 Whitney Biennial and she has had solo exhibitions at Real Fine Arts in Brooklyn, Sotoso in Brussels, Anthony Reynolds Gallery in London, and Andreas Melas & Helena Papadopoulos in Athens. A conversation on her work with the artist Gareth James appears in the current issue of Texte zur Kunst.