Outlines: Aistė Stancikaitė
Cuturi Gallery is delighted to present Outlines by Aistė Stancikaitė (b.1988, Vilnius). In this series of new works, Stancikaitė explores recurring themes pertinent to longing, desire, connection, intimacy, and vulnerability. Focusing on the contrast of absolute closeness and complete disconnection, she composes her paintings in a way that creates an unfinished narrative leaving it up to the viewer’s imagination. After taking a closer look, one may find it slightly unsettling and uneasy. Featured in this show, the Echo series underlines human emotion with the magnified paintings of mouths in ambiguous acts of screaming, laughing or smiling.
Inspired by photography and fine art, Stancikaitė also turns to contemporary design, cinema, architecture and human anatomy. From something as simple as observing situations of everyday life to being influenced by the works of other creatives, it shifts her perspective of the world and assists in the development of her practice.
The foundation of Stancikaitė's paintings starts with an idea which is then developed into a reference image made with her own and found images. After which, the image is broken down to its most basic form and gradually reconstructed into layers of details across the canvas. She focuses on light and texture, keeping a balance of abstract and figurative, to let one main subject take centre stage and leave the rest to imagination. For instance, there is an implicit mystery hovering over the hand under the glove in Of One’s Own (2023). Whose hand is it? With this painting, Stancikaitė leaves it up to the audience to uncover. The play on textures of shiny leather and smooth silk material suggests a narrative of sensuality and intimacy.
Stancikaitė's figurative works often concentrate on detail and structure. In her most recent works, the Lithuanian artist explores the tonal values of the colour red. She combines the contrasting mixes of dark purples and violets with light pinks, yellows, and whites to bring out the depth and dimension of the subject matter in her paintings. This simple technique of playing within the colour spectrum creates a clean yet rich final image with focus and intention. Stancikaitė is fascinated on how the colour red influences the space and the viewer and in her paintings, she creates an enigmatic, slightly eerie alternate universe by experimenting with the tonal possibilities within the colour spectrum of red.
In the Echo series, Stancikaitė examines the animalistic nature of our emotions, one of them being laughter; a sign of delight and happiness. On the contrary, it can also be a cry for help or hidden desperation. With this series, Stancikaitė intended to echo how a painting interacts with the audience based on their perspectives of what it conveys. The subdued, melancholic compositions of Stancikaitė are a response to the deep inherent feeling of loneliness, as well as the universal human desire to feel seen and connected.
Outlines allow the viewers a peek beyond the curtain, giving them a glimpse into someone else's life while also reflecting their own.
“Overall, there is a feeling of bittersweet longing that unites them all - the perfect world that is pictured in my work is only perfect and beautiful at first glance.”
Outlines will be on view at Cuturi Gallery from 4 to 26 February 2023.
Text by Huda Noor
Aistė Stancikaitė, Missed Connections I (dyptich), 2022
Aistė Stancikaitė, Missed Connections II (dyptich), 2022
Aistė Stancikaitė, TêTe-à-TêTe, 2022
Aistė Stancikaitė, Hideout, 2023
Aistė Stancikaitė, Of One’s Own I, 2023
Aistė Stancikaitė, Of One's Own II, 2023
Aistė Stancikaitė, Echo I, 2023
Aistė Stancikaitė, Echo II, 2023
Aistė Stancikaitė, Echo III, 2023