I first encountered the art of Lyra Romanas in 2018, and was immediately struck by the richness of story contained within her images, so I was delighted to learn a further small selection of her work is on display through until April 2019 at the Galerie Alice, curated by Alice (angedem).
Renewal and Transformation presents nine images by Lyra in respect of the theme, with a broad split between avatar and art studies. No liner notes are provided for the exhibition or its theme but frankly, the images themselves are so expressive, few additional pointers are required.
The four avatar studies in particular perfectly embody the ideas of renewal and transformation of self. Each offers us a moment in time, seemingly personal, with Mutation perhaps must clearly underlining the transformation theme. Within its monochrome lines it is clear something is happening – and that from the expression on the face of the subject, it is either not unpleasant, or she is oblivious of the change – although this seems unlikely; but what the trigger for her change, and why it is happening is the tease, the story we are invited to weave around the piece.
Equally, When It Rains, It Pours speaks of transformation – although this time it focus is on emotional transformation, rather than physical, while The Twilight Zone perhaps invites us to consider our own ability to transform ourselves both in and of the moment. It is left to the titular piece to offer an image suggestive of pure renewal, brought about through peaceful reflection whilst lying a warm waters. Yet, at the same time, the first three pieces also carry the theme of renewal as well: the birth of a new life-form, the opening of a new page of a life; the renewal of limber exercise, while the titular peace also carries with it a message of transformation, of rebirth from the water.
Supporting these four pieces are four focused on the 3D art of Mistero Hifeng. Again the themes of renewal and transformation are evident in all of them: the transformation of stone into caring figures, the emotions generated in their form itself renewing; the pure strength of renewal and simultaneous transformation from passive to active seen in Blown Away. Only the last piece, The Scales might at first seem at odds with the rest; until that is, one looks part the very different approach to colour and presentation and consider the balance between matters of renewal and transformation that can mark our own lives.
- Galerie Alice (Les Champs Elysees, rated: Moderate)