Tatar Alexandra

Tatar_Alexandra_Artindex_01Alexandra Tatar, ablauf datum, oil on canvas, 20 x 30 cm, 2013

Alexandra Tatar

Since 2011 studying in the “Expended Pictorial Space Class” at the “University of Fine Arts Vienna”/
Akademie der Bildenden Künste wien –Erweiterter Malerischer Raum/
2011, Bachelor in Painting at the “University of Art and Design”, Cluj-Napoca, Romania;

Tatar_Alexandra_Artindex_02Alexandra Tatar, me with roses, oil on wood, 18 x 20 cm, 2013

June, 2013 “(an)blicke#4” exhibition at Base-level Gallery, in Wien, Österreich;
March, 2013 „Anuala artistilor plastici dejeni editia a XXXVI-a“(“Annual Exhibition of the artists from
Dej, edition number XXXVI”) at Frezia Gallery, Romania;
January, 2013 “Rundgang” exhibition at the Akademie der Bildenden Künste Wien, Österreich;
January, 2013 “Could it be love? An exhibition with possible” at Tailor’s Tower-Urban Culture Center
Cluj – Napoca, Romania;
Mai, 2012 “25 Jahre Artmark Galerie” exhibition at Gallery Artmark, in Wien, Österreich;
January, 2012 “Rundgang” exhibition at the Akademie der Bildenden Künste Wien, Österreich;
January, 2012 “Anuala artistilor plastici dejeni editia a XXXV-a”(“Annual Exhibition of the artists from
Dej, edition number XXXV”) at Frezia Gallery , Romania;
November, 2011 “Young Graduets from the U.A.D.” exhibition at Gallery Mie Lefever, in Gent, Belgium;
June, 2011 Graduets Exhibition University of Art and Design Cluj Napoca, in Cluj- Napoca, Romania;
Mai, 2011 Exhibition during the workshop of Delahoya Festival in Cluj- Napoca, Romania;
January, 2011 “Anuala artistilor plastici dejeni editia a XXXIV-a”(“Annual Exhibition of the artists from
Dej, edition number XXXIV”) at Frezia Gallery, Romania.

Tatar_Alexandra_Artindex_03Alexandra Tatar, the door (the girl in the mirror is me), oil on wood, 70×50 cm, 2012

The stuff that stars are made of. Young Graduates from the School of Cluj, Mie Lefever Gallery, Ghent, 2011
For the fourth time, Mie Lefever Gallery hosts a group show of graduates of the
University of Art and Design in Cluj. This year’s edition features three talented young
female artists, brought together not just by belonging to a certain generation, but also, and
more importantly, by the common points that can be detected in their artistic approaches
of issues such as intimacy and public presence, feelings and clichés.
Thus, The stuff that stars are made of. Young Graduates from the School of Cluj
is a decidedly feminine exhibition, by that meaning that all the works revolve more or
less explicitly, more or less consciously around the encompassing topic of feminine
identity and its social perception. However, there is nothing artificial in the artists’
interest for such a topic. Their choices are not dictated by conceptual trends, but rather by
quite personal artistic interests. Hardly feminist and never rhetorically strident, the works
of Anca Badea, Alexandra Tatar and Anna Olenicenco are charmingly reflexive and
gently seductive, although acid accents and slightly ironical innuendos can at times be
guessed behind the smoothness that appears to dominate their images.
Anca Badea’s paintings are intimate in a rather strange way and technically
impressive without any unnecessary bravado. Her half – delicate, half – sophisticated
handling of painterly matter is not what one would call arresting. But this doesn’t make
the paintings in any way dull; on the contrary, her works can be spectacular, but they are
also rather demanding. Thus, her painting requires quite serious attention from the viewer
in order to be fully enjoyed. Still, although they do not aggressively catch the eye, but
rather seduce it, her works possess the subtle power to make the spectator turn to gaze at
them again, after passing them maybe to hastily, as the sheer refinement of her depictions
of pretty domestic, banal scenes lingers at the back of one’s mind.
Badea’s works in the show at Mie Lefever Gallery are intriguingly elusive, from
more than one perspective. The images themselves seemingly take the viewers into the
very intimacy of the depicted characters, as most of them are sleeping, carefree and
defenceless. In a way, the Cluj based painter acts like a caring voyeur, one that is
sincerely fond of the people into whose intimacy is prying. However, the prying eye ofthe artist also acts protectively.

Tatar_Alexandra_Artindex_04Alexandra Tatar,abstract body part, acryl on paper, 75 x 100 cm, 2013

The true intimacy of the characters in the paintings is
actually out of our reach, precisely because they are sleeping; their inner reality, literally
their dreams are in fact shielded by their closed eyes and by their very oblivion regarding
the surrounding world. They are thus vulnerable, yet safe, exposed, yet continuously
protected by the act itself of being represented in the enclosed, frozen painted image.
Moreover, a story can be presumed behind the skin of the image, yet the precise
narrative trajectory that had unfolded before the suspended moment in time captured by
the painting is impossible to actually track. The episodes leading to the serene scenes in
the works can be as various as a night of heavy drinking or a nervously exhausting
lovers’ quarrel, an overnight stay in a stranger’s house or a Sunday morning home arrival
after a long journey.
Technically solid perhaps in a more emphatic manner, Alexandra Tatar’s
paintings stem from the author’s triple fascination with painting, cinema and fashion.
Poignantly melting the references to such high specificity media together into something
coherent is definitely not easy. How to make a relevant painting about the
communicational codes of fashion and cinema that would “speak” about the
contemporary circumstances under which we construct our imaginary and eventually our
identity? How to meaningfully point at the artificiality of codes and still affectionately
depict iconic epitomes of feminine identity?
These interrogations represent the crux of her endeavour. And, as if these
questions wouldn’t be complicated enough to painterly try to answer them, the young
artist gets another medium involved in the challenging riddle: photography, the long time
sparring partner of painting. More seasoned and savvy artists would perhaps hesitate or
even refrain from tackling such a daring puzzle, leaving maybe its solving to
philosophers. But the young painter approaches it with a juvenile courage that is to be
admired, even if one might suspect that it borders conceptual recklessness, as it is a
convincing proof that we are presented with an artist for which art can’t be reduced to
petty commentary. She deploys painting to approach the overlapping realms of imagery
as if her medium of choice would be, for her, both the dear friend with which to casually
chat about life on a couch and the only philosophy that can make sense of an environment
in which artificiality had long become intricately present at the core of the civilization.
Alexandra Tatar’s works take as concrete starting point photos of female
celebrities, such as Marilyn Monroe, Suzy Parker or Carmen dell’Orefice. One can detect
in the painted images an almost teenage – like admiration for the heroines of the silver
screen and / or the catwalk. However, the paintings avoid becoming photorealistic, thus
reminding that the evocative power of painting might just lay in the very fact that it is, in
many respects, more remote to its object than other, more imperative media.
Anna Olenicenco is also attracted to identity issues, but, in her case, these are
introduced via the universe of childhood (or rather puberty) memories. The expressive
forcefulness of her displayed series of drawings, as well as of the small paintings featured
in the exhibition, relies upon remarkable draftsmanship as well as on her amusedly
affectionate, gently captivating approach to the realm of memory. She recurrently depicts
strongly evocative female characters in small scale, somewhat intimate works.
Sometimes the figures allude, as in the paintings, to distant and spectacular childhood
heroes or role models. Other times they are delicately recalling the seriousness invested
by a young, curious, lively girl in some activities that seem so movingly unimportant
when looked at after some years, with the scrutinizing and frustratingly lucid eyes of the
mature person that the little girl had turned into.
The works possess an arresting tactile quality, as, in the case of the pencil
drawings, for example, the surface of the wood on which the characters are depicted is
evocatively used by the young artist, alluding to the imprecise charm of old family
photos. Some areas of the drawings intentionally lack mimetic details, which makes them
unavoidably refer to the fuzzy way we remember quite long gone actions. Olenicenco
uses the interplay of textures in a refined way, fascinating the viewer’s gaze with what
appear as half – controlled accidents of the surfaces. The photographic image is, for her,
crucial for the way we live our memories, yet the immediacy and the somewhat inherent
anonymity of the photography seems to be considered by the artist to render the medium
too “cold” to adequately circumscribe the affective charge implied in the act of
remembering. And this is where the pigments intervene: the fine lines and patches left by
the pencil or the painterly matter used in a deceivingly naïve manner allow Anna
Olenicenco to produce (autobiographical?) works that effectively and quite directly
address one’s most unsophisticated feelings and most common reveries.
Bogdan Iacob

Tatar_Alexandra_Artindex_05Alexandra Tatar, Marilyn and Arthur, oil on metal plate, 15 x 15 cm, 2013

Stairs, stone and wooden rafters all make the Centru de Cultura Urbana a stimulating exhibition
centre. Inside the 15th Century Turnul Croitorilor, four exhibition floors and a café have been
imaginatively fitted into the ancient tower’s lofty space. The current exhibition of artworks and
photographs is all the more delightful for the modest scale of the pieces. Alexandra Tatar’s work in
fabric and paint jumps at you as you get to the top of the stairs leading to the main exhibition space.
The pieces are bright and arresting carrying a mix of femininity and a youthful brazenness akin to the
early punks who pierced their skin with safety pins. The quiet, almost unobtrusive monochrome
paintings of Corina Oprea appear unexpectedly, prompting delight in their discovery. Some are
almost like strips of Rothko in his purple patch. The first floor houses an exhibition of photographic
nightscapes of Cluj covered in the recent snow. Dan Tamas took pictures from several of the vantage
points surrounding Cluj. He brings a wonderful array of fresh views of a familiar subject, our dear
city. His photographs in the main exhibition have the quality of dreams, surreal and disturbing yet
something you want to remember, something that makes you wish to go back and look at again.
Above all this, completing the quartet, Valeria Dragan’s air-work of paintings are literally ‘Head in
the Clouds’. The canvases are suspended in space and are coloured on both sides instead of being
pinned flat against the wall. They are butterflies that are alive rather than brought to earth in an
entomologist’s box. This exhibition does more than justice to the city’s urban culture centre, it
makes it shine.
21 Ianuarie 2013, Mike Bailey
Tatar_Alexandra_Artindex_06Alexandra Tatar, Marilyn reading, oil on canvas, 40 x 45 cm, 2013

Iubirea din pictură şi fotografie
Joi, 10 ianuarie, a avut loc deschiderea expoziţiei “Poate fi iubire? O expoziţie cu posibil” la Turnul
Croitorilor – Centrul de Cultură Urbană.
La eveniment au fost prezenţi Valeria Drăgan, Corina Oprea, Dan Tămaș și Alexandra Tătar – cei
patru artişti care au organizat expoziţia – dar şi prof. univ. dr. Ştefan Găină, care a prezentat în
câteva cuvinte, cum vede el iubirea transmisă de creaţiile celor patru artişti.
Suntem într-o întrebare retorică: “Poate fi iubire?”… cred că toţi putem spune că da, poate fi iubire,
atâta vreme cât îi facem loc. Dar pentru a fi iubire, trebuie să avem oglinzi pentru acest lucru.
Expoziţia din seara aceasta este o oglindă a faptului că poate fi iubire. Putem să fim “cu capul în
nori”, precum instalaţia Valeriei Drăgan, putem să jinduim la această frumoasă tainiţă care ascunde
lucrările Alexandrei Tătar, putem să ne bucurăm că între cer şi pământ, Corina Oprea ne oferă aceste
scări, care nu au o geometrie fixă şi rigidă şi putem să ne înălţăm cu ele fără să călcăm, şi putem să
avem magia şi ascunzişurile copilăriei, precum în lucrările lui Dan Tămaş. (prof.univ.dr Ştefan Dorel
Diana Campean, revista Bulevard, Ianuarie 2013

Tatar_Alexandra_Artindex_07Alexandra Tatar,sink,oil-on-canvas-15×20-cm-2012