Savu is one of a young generation of artists from Cluj, in the north of Romania, who trained together at the Academy there, and since 2005 have emerged rapidly onto the international scene. It is a group which also includes Victor Man, Adrian Ghenie and Ciprian Muresan. They are linked by their training, and particularly by the common desire to flee the institution, and its academic approach, and a shared experience of childhoods rooted in communism and adolescences spent witnessing its disintegration. Serban Savu is a figurative painter. His skilfully rendered canvases capture the daily existence of contemporary Romanians at work and leisure. Savu treats his protagonists’ facial characteristics in a generic manner, causing their individual identities to remain elusive. Interior scenes depict people unaware of our gaze and absorbed in their own worlds, viewed through glass and embedded in compositions governed by architectural features. Exterior rural landscapes often portray solitary figures in the middle-distance, isolated and overwhelmed.
Savu's oeuvre is thus a series of poignant, observational snapshots that obliquely reveal the psyche of the ‘ordinary’ Romanian as the country experiences political change and economic growth. His subject is the figure in both the urban and rural landscape, but it is a landscape, and a subject that is itself subject to rapid change as the socio-economic situation of Romania shifts as the country enters the European Union.
In 2007 Savu had a solo exhibition,Girls, at Plan B, Cluj, and has been included in Expanded Painting the Prague Biennale, as well as Across The Trees at David Nolan Gallery, New York, and Eastern European Painting Now Lora Reynolds Gallery, Texas. In 2006 he exhibited in Cluj Connection at Haunch of Venison, Zurich and Please Drive Slowly Through Our World, Kontainer Gallery, Los Angeles.
PIPPY HOULDSWORTH GALLERY, London presents RUTH CLAXTON - Specular Spectacular
7 June - 6 July 2013
Specular Spectacular is a complex maze that occupies the 'centre stage' of the gallery.
Interconnecting structures hold mirrors that both become part of and reflect the installation itself.
Worlds within worlds are housed here, and inhabited by found figurines that are themselves swallowed up by amorphous reflective masks.
The show is a reflection of Liu Bolin's multifaceted and complex view of contemporary society and culture. The critically acclaimed and internationally renowned artist will release the first works of a new series, Hiding in California.