Andrei Predescu’s practice centers on mixed media installations and explores concepts developed within the post-digital art movement. Growing up in a social environment marked by skepticism towards digital resources or a lack of internet access, Predescu investigates the confluence between technology, human experience, and cultural identity. His works, ranging from 3D printed or laser-cut structures (such as “Droplets,” 2022, and “Flux Horizon,” 2022) to custom-made models or modified ready-made objects, installations, and video pieces, have been exhibited in major group exhibitions (“Where is she?” at Alert Studio, Bucharest; “Post-Nothing | kinema icon: In Good Company” at Arad Art Museum; “Possible Interactions” at the National Museum of Contemporary Art of Romania).
At the outset of the audio-visual residency hosted by Meta Cultural Foundation in Slon, Andrei Predescu delved into magical thinking and the practices stemming from it. His aim was to discover stories, rituals, and ancient traditions by sharing experiences and visions of reality that would inspire his introspective approach.
Guided by Traian Cepoiu, a local poet with a keen interest in the history of Slon and Cerașu, Professor Liviu Manea, the grandson of the priest Ioan Ștefan Vasilescu (one of the founders of the Heroes’ Cemetery at Tabla Buții), Petre Vasilescu, who recently led the local Dacian Guards Club (Clubul Străjerii Daci) of Cerașu, and elderly members of the community, Predescu explored places that bear an invisible recent history – places of community gatherings, former places of worship, and old folk remedies. However, his research gradually shifted towards mapping the temporal variation and gradual disappearance of explicitly mystical practices.
The Magic Carpets residency in Slon serves not only as a creative hub for artists, but also as a learning resource for the local children. They attended workshops conducted by guest artists, including a photography workshop led by Andrei Predescu at 2META Museum during the audiovisual artistic residency hosted by META Cultural Foundation in Slon. The children learned about focusing and composition, creating a story through images, and making photo albums with poetry.
Moreover, Andrei Predescu’s work process was enriched by discussions about his and other artists’ projects during presentations, as well as film screenings from previous residencies that the children also attended as part of the creative workshops.
“We live within constant mythmaking, of beliefs, of actions or of places that gain and lose their symbolic or magical meaning, and my work here in the META residency explored these cycles. Within “pass by”, the flows of magical thinking break down, they are codified and discarded, and we witness them as detritus. Their material presences, as supposed sites of worship, appear only as barren stone. The only constant is that of flux itself, a velocity that destabilizes spiritual identifications, modulates them through the lens of coercive power.” (Andrei Predescu)
At the end of the residency, Andrei completed his video work, “pass by.”
“pass by” (07:48) explores cycles of mythmaking, beliefs, actions, or places that gain and lose their symbolic or magical meaning. The only constant is that of flux itself, a destabilizing velocity. Like commodities, spiritual identifications do not merely disappear once discarded; they leave behind a half presence, a story of a story, a worn-down stone in the place of a former site of worship. If critical potentialities exist within magical thinking, they lie outside that which dominant power structures have already subsumed, outside the cycle that acts as the thematic horizon of the work.
Emerging artist: Andrei Predescu (Bucharest, Romania)
Residency place: META Cultural Foundation (Slon village, Prahova County, Romania)
Practice: visual artist (object, installation, sculpture, video)
Collaborating artists: Ștefania Becheanu, Mihai Smeu
Curated by: Raluca-Elena Doroftei
Curatorial text by Raluca-Elena Doroftei