‘Eel Soup’ by Federico Clavarino & Tami Izko captures moments of an ephemeral reality
Italian photographer Federico Clavarino and Bolivian sculptor Tami Izko join forces to create a series of works known as ‘Eel Soup.’ In this series we see photos by Clavarino paired with sculptures by Izko that were exhibited in 2019-2020 at the gallery VIASATERNA in Milan. This exhibition sets out to examine our own human experiences more closely and the parallels to the life of an Eel.
Clabarino’s images capture close-up details that one normally would overlook. Federico captures these intimate shots that provide no full story only a slice of one, no beginning, and no end. Izko’s sculptures appear soft, they curve and overlap, again offer no starting point for the viewer to grasp. This is how they steer the viewer’s attention to focus on the journey rather than the ending.
“By detecting magnetic fields, eels migrate to the Sargasso Sea to reproduce. They leave rivers behind and swim towards the Ocean to meet what scientists call “their life’s goal”, after which they die. The offspring will then swim back to the rivers, which are thousands of kilometres away. Each eel travels at its own pace, arriving before, during or after spring. Their last journey is a lonely one, whereas new-borns will make their way back to the rivers along with others, and there they will share a life together.
Now imagine an eel soup: a wriggling mass of creatures whose ends and beginnings can be swapped in the human eye, trapped in a limited space, their bodies entangled below the surface or floating on top of it, half submerged in the liquid that now holds them.
Like the visible bits of the viscous animals you have just pictured, the objects presented here are fragments of an ephemeral reality. By carefully observing spaces and body parts as they twist, press, open, close, bend and touch, photography and clay have become our means to reinterpret a series of meaningful connections. The resulting series of reconfigurations ultimately tells a story of coexistence, one that is largely built around the lingering images left behind by otherwise vanishing intersections.” – Statement found via Clavarino and Izko’s websites.
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