Thursday, April 11th, at 18:00, IAGA Contemporary Art Gallery opens to the public the exhibition signed by artist Oana Maria Pop.

Dismay: concern and distress caused by something unexpected.

(Middle English: from Old French, based on Latin dis- (expressing negation) + the Germanic base of may (expressing possibility).

Dismayland presents the results of a decade-long investigation into a generation that matured within a “modernised poverty”, dazzled by distant glittering things, and at the same time, without the prospect of a real change of one’s condition. The subjects of these representative works draw upon non-historical characters and moments from the past 29 years, each of which continues to resonate with the unwieldy failures in our current social-political setting.

This research stems from a personal interest in the relationship between space and human condition in contemporary Romania, and aims at examining and exposing an experience that belongs to a generation that was the recipient of constant promises of improvement over the recent forlorn past, in order to reach the “Western” standard of living. On top of these delusional projections of a better future, which is still yet to come, images from the enticing world of Columbia Pictures and Disney had a similar effect of enhancing the world view beyond the borders of the East (although only as an extremely limited vision of it). The exhibition’s title refers particularly to the present reality, one that is still both under the standards set in ’89 and also under those set by the “Western world”.

Elements of this reality surface throughout the exhibition in both form and content: representations of neglected non-historical figures, in contrast with their actual based surroundings, a building material that has been remarkably appealing to the world’s poor, and associated with left-wing politics; and the images of physical spaces and maps designed to give a sense of wholeness and truth, as Apoorva Tadepalli writes in Colonial Cartography: “Maps are productive rather than simply informative creatures; they start dialogues and create identities”.

IAGA Art Gallery (9-20 Closca Street, Cluj-Napoca) is pleased to announce the opening of the “Dismayland” exhibition by artist Oana Maria Pop. The exhibition is open from  April 11th to March 20th and can be visited from Wednesday to Saturday in the 14-18 pm.