2018, solo show at the National Gallery Prague, curated by Adam Budak, music score by dné, typography by Anežka Minaříková
Valentýna Janů finds inspiration outside the visual arts: mainly in literature, pop music and, especially, in a social and cultural environment of daily life. While oscillating between physical objects and textual narratives, a situation becomes a key word for Janů’s work; performative act dominates her interdisciplinary vocabulary. Words turn sculptural while texts become compositions within the formal assemblage of speech and writing.
I’m sry is Valentýna Janů’s per-version of a domestic phantasmagoria of delusional world surrendered to a terrorism of apology and regret. The artist brings the viewer into a space which forces you to slow down and apologize for all what you’ve done wrong. Intimate situation is a commentary and an antidote to a never-ending list of daily remorses, both conscious and unconscious. Objects and images are in dialogue with a soothing soundtrack by Czech musician dné.
Janů transforms the somehow shrunk space of a former Presidential Lounge into an imaginary chamber of domestic cliché. Teen spirit sets a mode for a repertoire of everyday frustrations and dramas, deconstructed into a spatial hysteria of a juvenile phantasy. Flatness is a world of a comic strip; superficial diagnosis of a reality becoming a standard perception of an erratic world we happen to be stranded in. Surface wraps us in like a fancy fabric of a seasonal fashion; vacuum of ambiance suffocates desire. We are apologetic skin of an overgrown guilt. The deepest is the skin. Little girl ain’t no savior. Her plastic island apology is a travesty of dated therapies and dreams; a membrane of injured senses with no hope for recovery. I'm sry, what’s your name? Excess contradicts the thought’s slow pace. I’m sry, a figure of speech reloaded? We are trapped in a process of re-writing our own self-apology; our ultimate therapy. Apology as a routine? Apology as a catharsis? Apology as a sanctuary of a blame? Plain Superficiality is the character of a speech, echoes Deleuze after Carroll. If you only spoke when you were spoken to, and the other person always waited for you to begin, you see nobody would ever say anything…, Alice utters on the threshold of a speech, hopelessly. In fact, Janů doesn't give a damn about the logic of sense. Her protagonist - the artist’s para-doxa - certainly does. Nothing is more fragile than the surface, her mantra. text by Adam Budak