Book of Hours

Book of Hours

Book of Hours

We cordially invite you to the solo exhibition of Sophia Hadjipapa-Gee, hosted in Casa Matei, a historical building now housing the University of the Arts and Design in Cluj-Napoca.

In these series of mixed media works on paper, Sophia explores the idea of a contemporary “Book of Hours”.

“The Book of Hours” springs out of an investigation of the concept of the liminal identity, and the intermingling of cultural identities and heritage as examined in her early theoretical research. The issue of liminal identity, is touched upon here as often we can observe the complex intermingling of diverse cultural elements, for example the star of David on Ottoman trays.

The Medieval Books of Hours are secular books of prayers appointed for particular canonical hours or times of day, used by Roman Catholics for private devotions and popular especially in the Middle Ages, when they were often richly illuminated.
Sophia proposes the creation of a Contemporary book of Hours, based on integration of ancient symbols and texts into a contemporary body of work.

On the presumption that humans have always attempted to alleviate suffering and bring good fortune to themselves and loved ones, Sophia is interested in the metaphysical that takes the shape of protective symbols and texts. Here she explores it tracing it historically, transculturally, looking through vehicles, such as the Book of Hours, the Books of the Dead, the Kabbalistic use of protective symbols and words, and the use of those in eastern meditative artefacts as yantras and mandalas.

The project is ongoing and the artist is interested to collect images and texts aimed towards transcendence in every place it travels. Already some pages have been devoted to shapes and images collected from the Bukovina Monasteries. What could be the case in Cluj?

In its final form, the separate ‘pages” will take on the form of a book, an artist’s book, where its pages can also be acquired as separate prints.

About the artist:

Sophia Hadjipapa-Gee, is an artist and academic, living in Cyprus. Sophia is Associate Professor and a board member of the Research laboratory “Cultural Studies and Contemporary Arts” at European University Cyprus. She has a BA in Painting from the National Academy of Arts of Sofia, where she also completed an MA degree, in Painting and a PhD in Art History and Theory. Besides painting she has worked on illustrations of poems, covers of books and has been involved in Public art, interventions in Public spaces, participatory projects, and video art, which have been presented in international festivals and exhibitions.
Sophia Hadjipapa-Gee has been coordinating the International Painting and Sculpture Symposium in Samokov Bulgaria, since 2015 and is currently Artistic Director of the International Motion Festival. She also co-curated The International Urban Emptiness Nicosia Festival, 10-16 December 2017, Nicosia, Cyprus. She has served in various professional bodies including sitting on the committees for the Selection of Works and Artists for Biennales and serving as academic expert on the committee for composing the New National Curricula in Art, of the Cyprus Ministry of Education and Culture.



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