The Wedding exhibition space Organ Kritischer Kunst (OKK) (>Organ of Critical Arts) is presenting the exhibition Threshold by Berlin photographer and sculptor Gøneja ✷ from 24 November 2023. On display are new photographs and sculptural works on the theme of ritual transcendence. The exhibition brings the ancient art of initiation as an aesthetic practice into the contemporary urban world.
Image above: Kristina: Sphinx, 2022, inkjet print on plate, shadow box frame, 88 x 102 x 5 cm. Performer Kristina Eyeva in the role of an ancient mythical creature.
Observing a rite of passage known as the ‘Ascent to Heaven’, novices of ancient Egyptian magic passed through the secret passages of the Temple of Edfu to reach its subterranean chambers. By lying there for days in darkness and deprived of their senses, the aspiring adepts experienced a complete detachment from their physical bodies, opening a portal through which their souls travelled to other dimensions. These ceremonies were regarded as the symbolic death and rebirth of the novices into a completely new state of consciousness, which was achieved through the initiation.
In crossing these thresholds, initiates transcended ordinary consciousness through mystical revelations and returned to the material plane with an expanded perception and a deeper sense of purpose. These rituals of spiritual renewal marked the transition from an individual, worldly state to the attainment of a universal, trans-temporal perspective. When one experiences divine fullness, one dies in one’s mundane existence in order to be reborn in one’s sacred life.
The new solo exhibition “Threshold” by Berlin-based artist Gøneja ✷ explores contemporary paths of initiation with a series of new photographs and sculptures. It presents a syncretism of themes that includes: ancient body rituals of peculiar practitioners, magical sigils as sculptural objects made from industrial materials and ancient esoteric symbolism in naked embodiments.
In “Luna Duran: Venus Conjunct Chiron”, the artist collaborates with the Bolivian performer to depict a celestial alignment that has deep personal and astrological meaning for the latter. Suspended from a full-body hook and handmade jewellery on her thigh, the myth of the wounded centaur in conjunction with the Greek goddess of beauty comes to life in the rough walls of an underground industrial tower.
In “Beyond The Naked Eye”, the artist creates a three-dimensional planetary hieroglyph that contains the alchemical symbols of Uranus, Neptune and Pluto in a metal structure – all invisible to the human eye. The sculptural seal thus becomes an invitation to reflect on the hidden forces that influence one’s own life.
Through a rich variety of themes, the exhibition “Thresholds” reimagines the ancient art of initiation as an aesthetic practice in the contemporary urban world. It frames this highly charged ancient method as an open-ended spiritual and artistic tool available in our modern lives.
Gøneja ✷ (1987, Milan) is a Berlin-based photographer and sculptor whose work focuses on myths, rituals and magic. He has published internationally and published two books. His work has been exhibited across Europe, including group exhibitions at Holy Art Gallery (London), Palazzo Bembo (Venice) and Rossocinabro Gallery (Rome), as well as in two previous solo exhibitions in Berlin at tête (2020) and Organ Kritische Kunst ( 2022).
Friday, 24. November 2023, 6:00 – 10:00 pm
Saturday, 25. November – Sunday, 17. December 2023
Thu – Sun 4:00 – 8:00 pm
Organ Kritischer Kunst