Zora Mann, Anna, 2017. Acrylic and oil on canvas; 200 × 130 cm.
Playing on a palindrome, Anna is an homage to the artist’s stepfather’s mother, who died a year before she made these two paintings. The paintings function as a double portrait, the dark one being the shadow or flip-side of the other – almost as if one were a film negative. The repetition of the geometric patterns made with acrylic and oil paint propose a system that could expand past the canvases’ boundaries and beyond its physical confines.
The background, a grid of rhombuses, refers directly to the permeability and porousness of being by establishing a seemingly unending fractal laying underneath its consecutive pieces. The figurative straws and cigarettes in the foreground are thus pushed outwards through the artist’s visual illusion. Conceptually, their references are likewise an extension of physical boundaries. Pursed on someone’s lips, the threshold where inside becomes outside, these two symbols act as a person’s elongated breath, like certain social activities and/or habits live on in someone else’s memory.