Laura Covaci is quite a game-changer in contemporary art. She paints in pixels. She scares people. She delights the connoisseur. She is unfazed by risk. She never stands still.
She was raised in the richly vibrant intellectual circle of the Covaci family, where the troubled generation of (nowadays) iconic poets, painters and actors used to meet for talk and wine and noisy late-night parties and garden ping-pong.
Their stories about time spent in Communist prisons, the recklessness of their new subversive works and the frisson of freedom – all layered themselves in Laura’s formative structure. She studied mural art in the mid 80s and started to paint large-scale, eerie landscapes of solitude and chill. She got to be her generation’s top record holder in an international art auction sale.
The gallery of characters she developed over the years, at home or indeed during her re-located lives in the United States or France, include equivocal men and women, nude and lonely, sitting on a metal-bar bed or by the side of a swimming-pool, against a crisp hospital landscape; bruised dolls and other left-over toys from silent orphanages; family portraits blitzed by the robot-cousin or the steel-eyed princess, next to the placid Dad and the bald twins.
Baroque worlds coming from a high-strung past and an unrelenting future, like there is no escape. In 2011, a new little creature took shape, this time from the impalpable depths of an iPad exercise: Luna. She is a little girl with spikes instead of hair and a sudden resource for smile and play. This moment opened up a whole new territory for the artist, who was already a master-mixer of fine drawing and brush painting, with collage and photo manipulation – listed in the Top 100 Romanian Artists.
She now dived deeper into the digital, modeling and painting on-screen in minute generation of infinite detail, like a fractal on a mission to capture Time. The artist is on a spree of opening and closing door after door, back and forth: an emotionally-moving march into our own transient lives -and of art history. Her achievement in the 3D medium is extraordinary not only per se but because it reveals the creative fountain of technology and its intrinsic resource to produce emotion – in Covaci’s unique compositions which take shape on her digital screen easel through drawing, painting, collage, sculpture and architecture.
One can think of the digital artist as a re-incarnation of the Renaissance multi-tasker! Laura Covaci’s luxuriant landscapes – where nymphs frolic with tigers, slender-white women wear pearls, metal nails and a golden crab tiara or indeed little girls from sepia photography times peer at us through their outer-space head-gear and play with a shiny high-tech drone – all this whizzes across multiple art history references which lead us from today’s digital artists to the Romantics and the Flemish masters, to Mucha and the Rococo in hybrid surreal and pop-art sweeps. If we scratch the surface of the past, we find future. This is where Laura Covaci’s series of new work belongs. But let’s be brave and enjoy it today.
(Text written by Gabriela Massaci)
Laura Covaci received a BFA in 1982 from the Fine Arts Academy in Bucharest. Her paintings have been exhibited in galleries, museums and private collections worldwide, including Grand Palais / SAGA Paris, Le Musee Imaginarire de l’Espace / Galerie Serge Aboukrat, Benetton Foundation, ING Bank, The European Bank of Developement, Elle Magazine Los Angeles Private Collection. She currently lives and works in Paris and Bucharest.
2015 ”Cruel Fairy Tale / Chapter 3 / Taking-off”, AnnArt Gallery, Bucharest, Romania
2014 ”Cruel Fairy Tale / Chapter 2 / Luna’s Phases”, AnnArt Gallery, Bucharest, Romania
2012 ”artZoom Laura Covaci: Cruel Fairy Tale / Chapter I”, AnnArt Gallery, Bucharest, Romania
2011 ”Cruel Fairy Tale / Chapter I / Orphanage”, Galerie 208 Chicheportiche, Paris, France
2009 ”Bug’s Season”, Galerie 208 Chicheportiche, Paris, France
2008 “Multiverse / Laura Covaci & Catherine Ikam”, Galerie 208 Chicheportiche, Paris, France
2005 ”’Transiter”, G.N.G Galerie d’art, Paris, France
1993 De Markten, Bruxelles, Belgium
2014 ”Spring artZoom”, AnnArt Gallery, Bucharest, Romania
2013-2014 ”pencil | ink | indian ink”, AnnArt Gallery, Bucharest, Romania
2013 ”[en]counterpoint”, Pop-up Gallery The Art of Living, Bucharest, Romania
”Summer artZoom_02”, AnnArt Gallery, Bucharest, Romania
2012-2013 ”The Small Big Art”, AnnArt Gallery, Bucharest, Romania
2012 ”Summer artZoom_01”, AnnArt Gallery, Bucharest, Romania
2011 ”Planning notebook”, AnnArt Gallery, Bucharest, Romania
2010 ”Phase Zéro / 96 Propositions Spatiales”, Galerie Serge Aboukrat, Paris
2001 ”Gallery’s Artists”, Trinity Gallery, Atlanta, SUA
1999 “The drawing parlor”, Saint Remy de Provence, France
1993 AJL Galerie, Paris, Franța
1993 Galerie Damien Bouquet, Paris, France
1993 “Saga”, Grand Palais, Paris, France
1992 “International Impact Festival”, Kyoto, Japan
1991 “Erotika”, Budapest, Hungary
We have the opportunity to live during a time of extraordinary change within our civilization. Ninety percent of mankind’s scientific and technological discoveries occurred in the second half of the 20th century – the raw material driving this new world is pure creativity.
Laura Covaci paints the future using artificial intelligence, robots, humanoids and extraterrestrials of a phenomenal universe. She makes us understand the enormous field of human intelligence and its incredible possibilities. She is the wonderful creator of a fine art universe that catches our breath, a profound artist who came wounded out of the communist abomination who makes us see the chaotic future of our civilization by means of intelligence and boldness.Pierre Cornette de Saint Cyr