#98 Distal Other (Mona Lisa)
77x53 cm. | Filler, oak frame
This piece is part of a three-part series. The works in the series share the same measures and a similar composition as the famous work by Leonardo da Vinci. The woman in his painting is placed in front of an open landscape. During the Renaissance, the central perspective was rediscovered, and the pictorial field was opened to depth, whereas in western history of painting, it had remained closed or very narrow. But the enigmatic character of the masterpiece might indicate that there is something problematic with this perception. It is as if she is somehow introducing us to the pictorial illusion of depth as such.
In psychology, The Other is the radical counterpart to the self or the Subject. It is defined in critical theory as everything outside, or different from, the male western hegemony. The figure in the foreground of the paintings, occupying the space of the Mona Lisa, is shaped as an empty dark space. It could refer to the Other as hidden or veiled. Or, in contemporary discourse, the wish or demand to withdraw from the public gaze through religious clothing as the niqab.
Distal means situated away from the point of attachment. Science of perception uses the term distal stimuli for objects and events out in the world about you. These works deals with the inaccessibility of reality and, at the same time, our interdependency with it.
Sign is a compilation of works that more or less vaguely resemble phenomena in reality. They do not represent specific things or places but utilise how perception is always searching for particular shapes related to different categories in the language of the mind.