’Untitled’ black & white series
The series is based on Dejean’s visual perception theory and a scientific dispersion theory, as interpreted by Tamas Vicsek, a Hungarian scientist in 2002. In the visual sense, the series is descriptive. What you see is the interpretation of carefully conceived patterns. The genesis of sensation is not the field of view; more precisely, sensation is not based on perception. Rather, it is the collective whole of perceptions, sensations, and the mental and psycho-physical states attached to them, that create the patterns. In other words, every form the field of view perceives can be traced to a previously experienced mental state; in this case, to episodes of anxiety.
Different stages of mass anxiety are presented in the pieces of this series. It starts out with the moment before panic; a primordial wave and tension, which foreshadow the outcome. In the second picture, this tension erupts diagonally on the paper, showing an external-collective state of mind, within which the participants are degraded to the point of controlled, powerless entities. This is a unique form of mental causation. By means of mental causation, I am able to control, or at least influence, myself and other physical and mental entities. However, mass panic as a collective state of mind extends beyond me and my peers with whom I share this condition; it leaves the confines of my physical and mental self and ‘steps out of me,’ externally controlling most of my mental and physical processes. To paraphrase it, it erases the option of control, turning me into an entity with radically reduced potentials, and an easy target for the swirl of panic. The third picture may be regarded as a mirror stage (Jacques Lacan). The crowd realizes its mental surroundings, which is the zenith of tension, the most unsettling point. The formation of concentric circles is one of the most basic defence mechanisms of a crowd, which can be observed with many other species as well. The fourth picture may be viewed in parallel with the second one, being its ascending pair, which illustrates the overflowing mass. This functions as the output of the enormous amounts of energy that had cumulated up to this point. The question is whether panic ever reaches its goal; whether there exists a rational goal, which had triggered it. For example, if a crowd tries to escape from a collapsing building, the reason and the goal are clear, even if the motives were born out of a state of panic. Once the threat disappears, so does the panic. However, if the inducing factors are less tangible, the matter becomes more complex. For lack of feedback from the crowd that would render the panic state redundant, the tension leaves gradually, in small doses only. In the first instance, the cause, the purpose, and the resolving tools are clear. If these three components are missing, further oscillations and eruptions may occur in the patterns, which would postpone the dissolution of panic.
The last three pictures are all-over pieces. They represent the crowd and clamour subsiding into silence. This is the end of the process, but, at the same time, it bears the potential of a new beginning. This is the field in which the pent-up anxiety can dissolve, only to reborn in the future. These three pictures foreshadow my optical colour mixing canvasses, which detail and magnify the themes of this sequence. This black and white series differs from my later works, both in its form and dynamics, as it portrays collective and general panic phenomena. Nevertheless, these seven pieces are what start drawing the spectator into the visual universe that will become more subjective, detailed, and colourful in my following works.