Daniel Gustav Cramer & Haris Epaminonda
Daniel Gustav Cramer ́s photographs, books, films, texts and sculptures seem to exist only in their own woven net of echoes and references. In and between the spaces of these fragmented works, a poetry develops, circling around the fundamental and inexplicable moments of existence, the a priori conditions of perception itself – time and space, nature and culture, history and the present, love and death. Within this practice, fragments of stories and abstract forms stand in direct dialog and open up a vague narrative, mapping a partly scientific, partly emotionally cartography. Cramer often works in ongoing series and groups among them Trilogy (2003-ongoing), a photographic atlas of archetypical landscape studies.
Haris Epaminonda & Daniel Gustav Cramer work and exhibit both individually and collaboratively; in their collaborations they act as curators, creating a narration within a space through loose associations of objects and images— among them their own works. Their shared interest in the poetics of micro- universes also manifests in the format of artist books, such as The Infinite Library (2007-ongoing), a long-term collaborative project which unfolds as an expanding, seemingly arbitrary archive inspired by the writings of Jorge Luis Borges.
Epaminonda mostly works with found images from decades past, both still and moving, which she cuts, edits, layers, and reframes. There is a peculiar quality to her material—faded travel photographs, pages of old nature magazines, ethnographic artifacts or footage from forgotten television programs—a curiosity in natural and cultural phenomena that the artist excels and transforms in her collages through an act of visual alchemy: “Ancient Egyptian and Cypriot artifacts begin to radiate colored auras, buildings are gripped by architectural and spatial schizophrenia, and polite living rooms are fractured by shards belonging to far-off locales and disparate temporal registers.”
For dOCUMENTA (13), Epaminonda and Cramer developed an exhibition that unfolds over the two floors and attic of a former office building (ZNL) behind the Hauptbahnhof. The artists turned the space into an orchestrated, mazelike stage by shutting up the interior from the outside world and transforming some, while closing other of the spaces, making them inaccessible yet present in one way or another.. An empty corridor between the ground floor and the attic— “describing the distance between things and formulating distance as a necessary virtue to overcome blindness”—connects and separates two spheres, creating a pause, a transitional passage. Inside their imaginary museum, Epaminonda and Cramer installed video works, photographic documents, found images as well as objects and artifacts from different cultures, grouped together or dispersed throughout the rooms, creating a suggestive meandering narrative through formal, aesthetic and conceptual associations. There are also book objects and two films: one filmed in Cyprus, loosely connected to Dante‘s Divine Comedy,and the other filmed in Romania. The placement of all elements in the space is part of a creative process, during which tension transforms into a continually reconnecting rhythm.