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  • Writer's pictureIoana Pioaru

MAXIMALISM - a solo group show by Ioana Pioaru

Updated: Mar 24, 2022



Jonathan Ross – Gallery 286

March 1 – April 21, 2022


Jonathan Ross – Gallery 286 is delighted to present ‘Maximalism – a solo group show’ by Ioana Pioaru, a UK based Romanian artist whose videos of her detailed pen and ink drawing technique have gained her over 66 thousand followers on Instagram. (@ioanapioaru)

The exhibition is grouped into several distinct projects, exploring a variety of new and traditional media, ranging from holography and installation to printmaking and ink drawing. It might be hard to believe that all these works are not by different artists were it not for the attention to detail and presentation which are unifying factors.

Front: Spectral Figures (2019 - 2020, virtual reality holograms)

Back: Extrusion (2017, linocut) and

Horror Vacui Wall (2020, linocut and digital print installation)

The series titled Spectral Figures combines Pioaru’s traditional hand-drawing skills with the unique features of holography and virtual reality art through an original technique developed by her and executed with the assistance of the Lithuanian company Geola. Portraits of influential artists such as Andy Warhol or Marcel Duchamp, as well as depictions of endangered species of animals, created in virtual reality, are brought into the gallery space as achromatic holograms of a kind never seen before in the UK.

Front: Spectral Figures (2019 - 2020, virtual reality holograms)

Back: Techno Pop! (2016 - 2019, linocut installation

The installation Meditation on a Machinic Cube combines traditional printmaking techniques with 3D printed frames and sculptural elements.

Visitors are confronted with the captivating illusion of a miniature cube floating in thin air above a larger one, the 3D structures relating to the two-dimensional ones alongside.

Front: Meditation on a Machinic Cube (2017, installation)

Back: Rubik's Cube Has Seen Better Days (2019, linocut)

Cartography is used as a vehicle for artistic expression in A Map of West Sussex, consisting of an illustrated map of the region’s vernacular architecture, while her Literary Houses combine the residences of literary greats with portraits of the authors themselves.

Literary Houses (2021, ink drawing)

A constant fascination for Pioaru, architecture is also featured in Heterotopia: Pubs of London a series of miniature illustrations presented in diptychs. Iconic London pubs are paired with portraits of anthropomorphic characters illustrating the names of the pubs. The wealth of details, executed in infinitesimally thin strokes and subdued tones, support a humorous steampunk aesthetic.

Below are a few photos from the opening night

Ioana Pioaru received her BA (2008) and MA (2010) from the National University of Arts in Bucharest, where she studied fine art drawing. In 2021 she received her PhD from the University of Chester, under the auspices of Glyndwr University, for her research into the concept of artistic maximalism. In Romania she is represented by AnnArt Gallery.

Gallery 286, based in a Victorian town house with a prize-winning garden, is the only UK gallery to have included holography as a regular feature of its contemporary art programme for over twenty years.

There is a Private View on Sunday March 6th 12.00 - 3.00pm, Open Days on March 9th, 16th and 23rd 12.00 - 6.00pm and a finissage on Thursday March 24th 6.30 - 8.30pm. Viewing by appointment at other times.


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