Sinta Tantra – Fantastic/Chromatic Exhibition.
On each wall there is print after print of bold geometric shapes. On grey canvas backgrounds strong pink and blue lines form squares and rectangles. These shapes are repeated across the page, creating an almost wallpaper effect of the 1960s. Sinta Tantra’s work is so accurately executed it verges on being a perfectionist’s dream. Her latest work, which is showcased on the 11th September to the 10th October 2015, is a deep exploration into the world of colour, specifically redefining the word chroma and how it relates to skin and ornament. For her ‘colour exists with its own structure: it is densely packed, hermetically sealed and contained.’
As you walk through the small art studio filled with budding art enthusiast, you are exposed to Tantra’s large and often overwhelming paintings that make you feel minuet in comparison. The middle class murmurs of critique are interrupted only by sounds of champagne filling glasses.
In style they are reminiscent of Bauhaus and art deco art with their straight, solid formations and accurately applied paint. What is noteworthy of Tantra’s style is her use of space within each piece. The non-active space is just as alluring as the active space. The blank canvas behind the squares makes the colours stand out more; draws attention to their obsessive precision and allows the eye to drift systematically.
Each shape is constructed as if by an architect. The points line up with great satisfaction, filled in with solid block colours. From certain angles the art begins to transform in front of you from two-dimensional to three-dimensional. Flat, static rhombuses twist into cartoon buildings and boxes. This allows Tantra’s work to be appreciated on another level, but you have to really be looking for it. Tantra explains ‘colour exists as an integral aspect to my work and I am drawn to it as a material which lies between the language of art and industry’. The colour must remain within the guidelines she has set out. There is no splatter or flaw of colour and our focus is drawn to the ‘colour collage’ that she has created.
She draws obvious inspiration from artists such as Stella, Le Witt and Buren and as an observer, you begin the question how original and risqué Tantra has been with her latest creations. What she has to be applauded for is the rigorous time that must have gone into her work. The hours spent mixing the exact toned pallet of blue across perfectly planned lines and the structured pattern that dances across the whole exhibition, is nothing less than commendable.
But has Sinta Tantra been too safe with her latest exhibition? At points the art pieces becomes very similar to the last and you get the impression that this is her general message. Repetition. You end up trying to collect your own message from her work. Is this repetition a statement about the mundane nature of the 9 to 5 grind that millions face? Probably not. Tantra’s work is merely an appreciation of symmetry, colour and pattern. And if you are inspired by this type of style then you will love her work.
Kristin Hjellegjerde Gallery
Kristin Hjellegjerde opened her gallery in south west London in June 2012 following her move from New York. The gallery showcases cutting-edge contemporary art from emerging and established international artists, the central concern being the creation of an intimate space in which artists can present a coherent body of work within a focused environment. Drawing on her own international background, Kristin Hjellegjerde seeks to discover and develop new talents by creating a platform through which they can be introduced to local and international audiences while and also allowing for artistic exchange. Kristin Hjellegjerde also acts as an art advisor for both emerging private and corporate collectors. For more information, visit www.kristinhjellegjerde.com.