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"Universum" Elya Asadullaeva

10 - 28 January 2023 

MASA studija


"Universum", taking its roots from the Latin language, means "turned into unity" and represents the unity of the self and the world. Once awakened, a practitioner of an eastern philosophy realises that he and the world are inseparable expressions of one another - he is turned into unity. One searching to grasp the meaning of life is the Universe chasing its own tail.


Opening event

Artist Elya Asadullaeva is convinced that there should be an element of surprise in the process of creation.

“When I create from imagination, shapes form on their own accord and I get to witness them becoming. That is exciting. Over endless attempts to figure out a direction, I have discovered: the lesser the means of expression, the more creative the output.”

All of the artist's paintings are monochromatic because as soon as she sets down four tubes of acrylic paint that can produce any tone or hue known to man, the rationale behind color theory overwhelms her. When Elya has a pen and a surface, there is no barrier for other-dimensional concepts to overcome - they flow freely. According to philosopher Alan Watts, everything in nature is wiggly and the world swings, so the artist swings with it and wiggles a pen. The goal is not to produce, but to witness an organic metamorphosis born out of repetition and meditation.

The proposed body of work is a render of the objective Universe, not stained by cognitive capabilities of mortal animals; a portrait of the Universe in a vacuum, where there are no concepts of colour and shape, and where existence is not distorted by rods and cones or gray matter. The Universe, an infinite geometric progession going in both directions - into the macrocosm and into the microcosm, is a constant fluctuation of disembodied energies, a mathematically perfect chaos, which the artwork depicts.

The title of each of the paintings from the series "Everything is in Flux" is a quote from philosopher Alan Watts' lectures on the topic of the relationship between the Self and the Universe. His lectures are broadcasted during the exhibition so the visitors could get an immersive spiritual experience, hearing exactly the words from the lectures which the Universe deems necessary for that particular person to hear in that particular moment in time.

Before the exhibition is started, on the 21st of December from 18:00 to 22:00 during the Riga Last Thursdays event you can attend a performance “Getting Ready for the Next Exhibition” with the participation of Elya Asadullaeva. The performance is a reflection of the artist’s feelings, actions and the process of creation in preparation for the next exhibition. The synthesis of the artwork, the exhibition space, the curator, and, finally, the viewer, is demonstrated by this very real process that happens right in the gallery.

Art catalogue


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