There is a tendency in our culture to denigrate surfaces. People say something is superficial when they want to put it down. But, in fact, surface matters. It’s so sensual and central to our lives. Surfaces are a primary form of habitation and they are everywhere in artistic expression. So I wanted to think about the surface as a place of connection, as a meeting place, beginning with the fact that our primary form of habitation is our skin. The skin is a membrane that breathes, connecting outside and inside, and it defines the contours of our bodies, of our selves. So the first surface is our body and we communicate with others through touch. In this sense, the surface is a zone of encounter between us and the space that surrounds us. A second skin that covers us, clothing, represents another layer of surface in which we present ourselves to the world. A third “superficial” envelope is the surface of the walls that we live within. And how not to recognize that the canvases of paintings, the skin of things, and the textures of sculptures are also essentially surfaces? Last but not least, we have the surface of the screens that today surround us everywhere in space. Given that we live in a world of surfaces, it seemed to me that we needed to rethink how important this connective membrane, this very elusive material of surface is. This is a material that creates contact and that can also connect mediums and art forms together. Surface is the precise site that the body, fashion, architecture, painting, and cinema all share. So, by way of surface encounters, I want to link together all these fields and disciplines that have been traditionally considered separate. Surfaces for me are ways of imagining the visual and the spatial arts not as distinct but as together.
Giuliana Bruno, in an interview with BOMBsylvides (via reichsstadt)