Exhibition Intuition and Procedure at FBQ Museum | Qatar
Looking at Ilona’s paintings and carpets / tapestries one feels a tension between dimensions. Working on a flat surface as a painter she creates a tension between the surface of the painting and a three-dimensional world.
Working in three dimensions as a sculptor she typically sets up a reverse tension with flat surfaces. Ilona builds her personal universes in the voltage fields between the two-dimensional and the three-dimensional.
The titles that are given to the paintings reveal their intention: the Polynuclear series, the Tangle series, the Omniverse series, and more recently the Q series. Whereas Q stands for quantum, as well as for Qatar, where the recent paintings were made.
The paintings are the opposite of metaphorical, they do not have the intention to even remotely look like an universe, they are the direct expression of series of gestures, intuitively smashed on the canvases, using wide tipped acrylic markers.
The speed of the operation is essential to the working procedure of Ilona, since she wants to avoid deliberate thinking, she wants to surprise herself. And by that intuitive procedure she succeeds in taking us as the viewers by surprise, therewith orchestrating an immersive form of serendipity.
Ilona works with large canvases on the ground, circling around the canvas and even stepping into the canvas while marking her fast and furious gestures around her, thus building her personal universe. There is no up and down in her universe, no front or back, her paintings are universal in the true sense of the word. Only after the paintings are made the decision is made how to mount the painting on the wall.
Meaning and metaphors are not intended by the artist, and not imposed on the viewer. Now it is up to the eyes of the beholder to jump freely into these rich multi-layered universes, surprising in their levels of detail.
Standing in front of the large paintings, walking towards them and zooming in into them is a rewarding experience, as one starts to float freely in the evoked three dimensional space, feeling the power of the strokes.
Not accidently Ilona refers to her intuitive gestures as powerlines, that are put on the canvas with force and speed. The power she has forced upon the continuous gestures is gratefully received back by the viewer when navigating her universal paintings.
Ilona’s paintings gives us the feeling of being infinitely small and unlimitely powerful at the same time. One is happily caught is the voltage field between the dimensions.
The Victory Boogie Woogie painting by Mondrian is clearly inspired by the busy streets and urban blocks of Manhattan. In her recent 3d printed series of MyMondrian Ilona Lénárd pushes Mondrian’s last unfinished painting into the third dimension, therewith evoking the image of urban blocks and street canyons.
The colour fields of the Victory Boogie Woogie are translated using Rhino / Grasshopper visual programming into different heights for the smaller and bigger squares. The path of the 3d printing head is designed to randomly wiggle and sway along its course as to avoid a too clinical build-up of the layers.
The first 3d printed version is the MyMondrian Black, produced by 3D Robot Printing in Rotterdam. A black polypropylene mix is pumped into the printed end-effector of a big robot arm, which printed layer for layer the large work of art in a number of pieces that fit together to form the whole.
For the printing procedure pure gcode was written by ONL / Hyperbody alumnus Arwin Hidding, therewith bypassing proprietary firmware with its built-in limitations how to operate the robot arm. The challenge set by the artist directly inspired a technical innovation in 3d robotic printing !
The jacquard woven tapestries MyMondrian Day and MyMondrian Night designed by visual artist Ilona Lénárd.
The year 2017 is the Mondrian year, celebrating 100 years of De Stijl. Having lived and worked in the studio Theo van Doesburg in 1988-89, Ilona Lénárd feels emotionally connected to the work of Piet Mondrian of De Stijl movement, especially to his latest work the Victory Boogie Woogie.
The Victory Boogie Woogie painting by Mondrian is clearly inspired by the busy streets and urban blocks of Manhattan. In her new series of the Jacquard woven tapestries MyMondrian Ilona Lénárd pushes Mondrian’s last unfinished painting into the third dimension, therewith evoking the image of urban blocks and street canyons. The colour fields of the Victory Boogie Woogie are translated using displacement mapping technique into different shades of gray.
The MyMondrian wall tapestries have exactly the same dimensions as the original Victory Boogie Boogie, 127 x 127 cm, diagonally positioned.
MyMondrian Day and Night are on show at Design Days Dubai in Design District D3 from 13-17 March 2017, presented by the Dutch Creative Industry [DCI], and at the Salone del Mobile from 4-9 April, presented by Masterly at the Palazzo Francesco Turati in the center of Milan.
My Omniverse Jacquard woven fabric has been applied in the soft fabric inlays for the Body Chair, designed by Kas Oosterhuis. The Omniverse fabric was cut into sixteen triangular pieces and wrapped around the inlays as to create a soft feel for the Body Chair.
During Beirut Design Week I showed two of my Jacquard woven tapestries, Omniverse #1 and Omniverse #2. The show was part of the Partners International Business [PIB] program supported by the Dutch Creative Industry [DCI]. Beirut was a very positive experience, a much more pleasant city than I expected. Although according to the Dutch Ambassador Hester Somsen the militia are unpredictable and may fight each other any moment, adding more bullet holes into the abandoned buildings, the general atmosphere in Beirut city was good and forward looking. The designer community is coming alive and is gaining momentum, especially with respect to sustainability and the relevance of design for the public realm.
During the design week I established a good contact with the famous carpet shop Iwan Maktabi and its present owner Mohamed Maktabi. Also we got to know his cousin Hadi Maktabi, also a carpet designer and carpet dealer. I will participate again with new work next year for the Beirut Design Week 2017 and 2018, again as part of the DCI.