Essay on Armen Agop: The Man and the Stone by Victor Hugo Riego

20 September 2013

Armen Agop’s sculptures repose in a secretly precarious stillness. These seemingly anchored forms consent to movement when pressed to it by our hands. Later, they inexorably return to their original position. As a result of their curved shapes, these black granite metronomes gradually slow and stop in a subtle dialogue between light and shade.

To the creative work on the variety of abstract shapes and the assured manner in which these occupy their position in space, the artist adds a variety of sharp, pointy or linear details. These elements, combined with the curves, rhythm the gravity of the granite. A dance, sometimes giddy, unfolds on the sleek surface of these sculptures. A curious weightlessness transfigures the stone.

Paul Valery, in an excerpt from his poem «Orpheus», (Album of antiques verses), speaks to us of the metamorphosis of stones during a volcanic eruption:

Il chante, assis au bord du ciel splendide, Orphée!
Le roc marche, et trébuche; et chaque pierre fée
Se sent un poids nouveau qui vers l’azur délire!

On the deep black granite surface, smooth and polished, light draws bits of uncertainty within the shades.

Increased attention is called for and the viewer’s acuity focuses to avoid losing itself while following the undulating surfaces of these luminous waves. In half-light, the sculpture reveals, in depth, its shape and the space it occupies.

A line interrupts the space held within the stone and testifies of the existence (yet again following an idea of Paul Valery), of a «secret architecture». These sculptures resemble solid fruit born from an earthly thought. Their slight differences reveal different stages of an evolving process. Thought contaminates the form and reveals itself through it.

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