Nut

DAIGA GRANTINA / LVA

*1985, lives and works Paris and Riga

In 2019, when Daiga Grantina represented her country at the Venice Biennale, she gave her exhibition in the Latvian pavilion the title "Saules Suns." It centered around several suns in the form of light sources in a multi-layered sculptural landscape. It was referred to as a cosmological scene; however, the lights did not primarily conjure up outer worlds, but rather functioned as an exercise in expanded vision.


Daiga Grantina typically creates large-scale sculptural assemblages that emulate the natural world, often resembling terrariums and vegetation. She uses a wide range of everyday materials, from the synthetic to the organic, often inverting and trespassing the limits of their traditional uses. The revelation of both the corporeal and immaterial qualities of substances is at the center of her work. Drawing from biomorphism, the artist both references and incorporates organic and inorganic shapes and materials, producing a new type of sensory perception that renegotiates boundaries between artwork and viewer, the natural, spiritual and social worlds. Daiga Grantina’s fascination with light often plays a major role. Her works are often semi-transparent; they shine or reflect sources of light. In this way, a kind of Baroque space emerges: a mythology of artificial materials whose trompe l’oeil-effect catches the eye and leads it through the space, immersing the entire environment in a rhythm of light, volumes and bodies.


Her contribution to Showing True Colours draws from ancient Egyptian mythology. Suitable for an object that has its place high in the air, Grantina’s flag references the figure of Nut, the goddess of the sky and mother of the stars. The sun was believed to disappear in her mouth in the evening, to travel through her body at night and reappear in her lap in the east in the morning. In this eternal cycle, the stars also wandered through her body during the day. The artist adopted the body of the goddess, which protrudes over the earth, and overlays it in a classic graphic process with the stone rubbings of simple paving stones, whereby a second optical loop is formed, which reflects the body of the goddess. The cobblestones are configured like the stars under the night sky.

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