Spatial reference and performativity in the artistic works of Linda Nadji

Born in Teheran in 1972, Linda Nadji, who studied design, drama and visual arts, increasingly combines aspects of object constitution, spatial reference, movement and performativity in her artistic practice. Particularly noteworthy in relation to Nadji's spatial interventions is her work "Wanna be a Swimmingpool" (2013) at the Kunstverein Gelsenkirchen, where she guides a wide strip of felt carpet in bright turquoise through the room - and not, as usual, neatly laid edge to edge on the floor, but also along the walls in big turns and up to the ceiling over the ceiling beams. There is a total of 100m2 of carpet material in the room, a piece of carpet 50 meters long, which is continuously led through the space and restructures it, taking the shape of a heptagon. The room parameters are perceived in a new way, the wooden support columns are characterized by the material of the carpet, which in turn has a matte, soft as well as a protective film insulated, shiny side, both of which are visible and shape the perception.

Through this spatial intervention, the impression of the exhibition space changes fundamentally, the receptives are in the midst of the work and are surrounded by the materiality of the soft as well as shiny pile, which evokes associations with water through the color, the reflection of the lights and the shine, as the title of the work suggests. As if the attic with its supporting structure would be transformed into an imaginary swimming pool. In her combination of serially aligned neon tubes with the turquoise carpet, Linda Nadji transformed the exhibition space into a special place of perception and emotion through the intelligent use of surfaces, haptics and optics as well as the existing room parameters.

In a similar way, Nadji's work "Im Grünen" (2015) works in the Kunstraum Holzmann in Kirchheimbolanden, where she inter alia as a large, intervening work a green, slightly opaque plastic film taut between the existing numerous pillars of the old malting now used as a presentation site for art, clamped at different heights. One almost feels the tension physically, dividing the space, connecting the pillars and directing the corridor as well as the gaze of the beholder. Furthermore, the attention is acoustically influenced by a sound played by the tape with birdsong, which also influences the perception and mood and lets you associate a situation "in the green".

In her exhibition "Framed Unframed" in the project space "Tyson" in Cologne in 2015, Linda Nadji also dealt specifically with existing room parameters of the exhibition space with a large shop window and used projections, side windows as well as the window to the courtyard for her sculptural interventions in the room, by picking it up, making it visible and partly mirroring or exaggerating it. The architecture, or more precisely, an existing wooden structure supporting the ceiling of the exhibition hall, is presented in the work "XXX", which Linda Nadji designed together with Soo Hyun Hong and presented in the exhibition "WinWin" in 2014 in the freight yard Ehrenfeld in Cologne , taken up. The two artists mirrored the construction, accentuated it and carried it to the floor of the exhibition space, allowing the formal structure of the space to be experienced in a new way. The connection between the architecture of the X-shaped support columns and the sculptural setting is also revealed in the title: "XXX". Here, too, the sculpture becomes a supporting element, which shows once again how functional architectural elements repeatedly become part or occasion of Nadji's artistic work.

In doing so, she often resorts to building materials such as wood, foil, carpet or polystyrene panels. In her work "Heizkörper" (2010), for example, she wedged commercially available polystyrene panels obliquely to the floor in the interstices of a radiator located in the exhibition space, thus creating an exciting and strong localized sculpture from an existing useful element of the space, the appearance of which depends on the observer's point of view and movement in the room changed slightly.

Linda Nadji often reflects on this aspect of the movement of the recipients in her site-related work, and in her latest work also extends it to the manner of offering by explicitly making people who have made movements their profession - dancers - in their own artistic process. By asking the dancers for a physical handling of the materials she has selected and declaring this material handling in the movement to be her work, she opens up the typical, classical concept of art in the movement and the directly comprehensible material handling, which in turn results from a common collaboration arises with the dancers.

For some time now, an aspect of variability due to movement has become increasingly associated with her object-like and space-related sculptural studies. In doing so, Linda Nadji repeatedly uses existing works, recombines them and transfers them to new works. For example, in 2016 she presented the sculpture "Oktagon", which she presented as a static solitaire in a group exhibition at the Palazzo Trecchi in Cremona in 2013, in a performance in the Maschinenhaus in Essen in the form of two individual parts on a kind of floor base - as well reminiscent of a gymnastics mat - is now animated by a dancer, which rises into the two cylindrical parts, so body and sculpture seem to interact with each other in slowed movements. The dancer, the object and the movements produce a new artistic form, which is performed performatively and shows the object in motion.

In her latest project - a 50-hour performance in the "Matjö" project space in Cologne with the title "materials" - the artist experimented with two dancers for 50 hours in a showroom with a certain number of plasterboards - also a simple material from the construction industry - and photographically documented the resulting different forms and movements. The exploration of this process between movement and standstill, action and sculpture as well as between contact, collaboration and individual composition denies a balance between an artistic will, an artistic-scientific exploration of aesthetic parameters as well as movements and a playful attitude characterized by great openness.

Linda Nadji's work has a strong interest in fundamental questions of artistic creation, which focus on the perception of environments and their careful sculptural-installative response to exhibition spaces, as well as questioning, searching, and acting and acting as well as in the movement auslotendem material handling reflects. Most recently, this involves the interaction of different persons, bodies and objects, which further open the bow of their work.

Linda Nadji combines aspects of form, presentation, self-expression, embodiment and the surrounding space in many ways and transforms them impressively in her work. She explores in a special way the moments in which something of the form or even norm comes and the normal (space) order is disturbed or transformed. For example, Linda Nadji's previous artistic work ranges from space-related work to a joint work with dancers in a visible acting of material handling, whereby the movement becomes an important component that complements its always existing material affinity and spatial orientation in multi-layered works.