Visible/Invisible is a performance-for-camera that draws on Anna Płotnicka’s reflection on the physical properties of air. The artist’s engagement with this theme was inspired by a casual conversation between her mother Zenobia and her aunt Mania, during which the question “how are you doing?” elicited the paradoxical reply: “I’m holding on to air.” This expression turns air into a synonym of a lasting life support and, importantly, lends it a material dimension.
In her performance, Płotnicka examines the contrast between the impossibility of grasping air by human perception and the potential of using it as a material. Supporting her hands on a transparent glass panel, the artist tests the potential inherent in the linguistic metaphor of “holding on” to air. Through direct physical contact, as if using the phenomenological method, Płotnicka seeks the possibilities to develop ways of interacting with air.
The eponymous opposition between “visibility” and “invisibility” also refers to the situation of the viewer, who is unable to notice the “transparency” of the glass panel and therefore feels compelled to challenge one’s own perceptual habits, consequently “suspending” popular beliefs concerning the perception of space.
Language: no language
© Anna Płotnicka