Critics’ Picks

Spiros Hadjidjanos, Dipsacus Laciniatus, 2014, 3D Alumide print, aluminum coating, 11 1/4 x 9 1/4 x 2".


Spiros Hadjidjanos

Future Gallery
Schöneberger Ufer 59
December 4, 2014–January 11, 2015

In a review of Karl Blossfeldt’s 1928 photography book Urformen der Kunst, Walter Benjamin marvels at the artist’s use of then-novel photographic technologies, through which “a geyser of new image-worlds hisses up . . . where we would least have thought them possible.” That unlikely site was the minute surface of plant life, whose hidden structures expanded under Blossfeldt’s magnifying camera lens. Nearly a century later, Spiros Hadjidjanos harnessed recent technologies of our own time to transform a selection of Blossfeldt’s photos into four wall-mounted works as part of Hadjidjanos’s second solo show at Future Gallery. The artist scanned first-edition prints and added depth information algorithmically, rendering the 3-D files in an aluminum-nylon composite so that the data points extrude in thin metallic shoots, forging the botanical still life into some kind of space-age sod.

Like Blossfeldt, Hadjidjanos excels at making imperceptible structures visible: Networked Gradient, 2014, comprises eight unlocked wireless routers in two rows, each pair connected by a ceiling-height arc of fiber optics running from the routers’ status lights; they pulse with a blue-green gradient, visually amplifying the nodes’ fluctuating data signals. In Transmission in-itself, 2014, seven used Apple keyboards line the floor, each cloistered in a blown-glass vessel like a model ship; the USB cables emerge from the narrow bottlenecks mutely. These devices are sequestered from human touch, but the work only serves to underscore Hadjidjanos’s manifest desire to make the immaterial realm tangible, to give form to its inscrutability.