0331c and Grisha. Soot2017
Many books have been written on the role of fire in human life. It was therefore particularly important for us in this catalog to bring out fire as an artist’s tool. At times, lighting a match or a torch, we are, consciously or not, motivated by a primordial desire to leave our mark, a drive that led graffiti from its birthplace in caves to the entrance halls and elevators of today. Fire generates smoke which deposits soot on any surface it comes into contact with. Being one of the first forms of graffiti, “smoking” resembles the contemporary means of creating graffiti with aerosol paint. In a similar way that today the graffiti writer sprays paint, touching neither the wall nor the drawing, early humans would raise a torch to the ceiling causing the spurts of flame to leave sooty marks on it, thus forming drawings. Although these marks, dense in tone, always stand out on light surfaces, a careless touch or a strong gust of wind are enough to make this black velvety coating vanish. Perhaps this is where what artists call magic starts.