The public call out for the inaugural CIRCA x Dazed Class of 2021 initiative asked audiences to submit a 2.5 minute film in response to the theme ‘Communion’ set by interdisciplinary artist and lecturer, Angel Rose. After receiving 2,000 applications, we are proud to present the 30 finalists who will each receive access to the Dazed Space and have their work exhibited as part of the CIRCA programme, appearing across public screens in London, Tokyo and Seoul this September.
Expanding on their commitment to help support the talent of tomorrow, CIRCA and Dazed appointed a community of jurors including Cauleen Smith, Frank Lebon, Hugo Comte, Simone Rocha, Dexter Navy, Hans Ulrich Obrist and Michele Lamy to select their top 5 submissions. From this, one lucky finalist will be selected by world renowned performance artist Marina Abramović to receive the #CIRCAECONOMY cash prize of £30,000.
With public art spaces diminishing, investment in arts education being cut and artist communities at risk, this joint initiative aims to empower the next generation of artists working in moving-image by platforming new voices and points of view from local communities on a global level, giving them unrivalled media exposure and the tools to help kick start their careers.
Christina Anagnostou (22) works with painting, moving image and 3D animation (video, installation) based in London. Born and raised in Athens, Greece the artist is trained in academic painting and is currently a graduating fine art student in Print & Time-Based Media at Wimbledon College of Arts. The use of rich visuals and oversaturated colours are fundamental to the aesthetic of the work, applied on sets, characters, costumes and creative direction. Her art practice revolves around the playfulness of virtual identity, creating personas and cyborgs. the artist has been in a group show with the Cream Athens: Whipped exhibition at the Coningsby Gallery, will soon be part of a group virtual exhibition for the final project of Kristina Kostenko at London College of Fashion and did a co residency at the Lalaounis Jewellery Museum in Athens.
‘I am you, you are me’ (2 minutes 30 seconds) gives the machine the choice to create from all that is important to me: powerful human connections. Through an Artificial Intelligence algorithm, I fed into the machine images of my friends and family that represent the intimate spiritual experiences I have with them, and let the machine create a blend of all these influences. Machines are said to be dismissive of emotions and feelings, but what happens when we stop viewing the machine as an empty transmitting vessel and create an intimate relationship with it?
‘I am you, you are me’ relates to the theme of communion through the creation of a community and grouping friends and family. In the post-modern society, technology is now a potent tool that facilitates communication and transmits a new sense of community creation and self expression. In this way a new aspect of communion is created, a dynamic exchange between humanity and technology, transcending the bodily functions of emotion and spirituality.
How did you become an artist and what was your route to your current practice?
I knew from an early age that I wanted to be a creative and it felt only natural to do art so I gave it a go. I was trained in academic painting with charcoal and acrylics to apply for the Fine Art school in Athens. Painting though felt confining for me so I decided to study in London to expose myself to different mediums and cultures. The journey to shape my artistic identity was full of experimentation, spanning from print making and painting, stone carving to now digital animation and film making. Technology had always fascinated me and having to work from home was the push I needed to start working digitally.
What inspires you to make your work?
CHRISTINA ANAGNOSTOU: My biggest influence is popular culture and human relations. I consider myself a work in progress so I make artworks that express what I’m experiencing at the moment. I am taking in all aspects of life and try to piece them together in a playful way.
Can you identify any elements of your community or collaborators that have had a strong influence?
CHRISTINA ANAGNOSTOU: I like to consider all my friends my collaborators because they have contributed to the formation of the identity I have now through the experiences and memories we have had together. I have always been surrounded by a community of other creatives like musicians, art directors, fashion designers and other artists with whom I actively exchange ideas and collaborate on projects which has pushed me to evolve and try new things.
Would you consider your practice to have a positive social impact, and if so in what way?
CHRISTINA ANAGNOSTOU: I reckon that my art practice is inspiring others to see things from a more playful, less serious and confined perspective. I don’t like imposing meaning on my art so even if it stimulates someone’s attention even for a few minutes, I’m happy. Everything we see and experience affects our worldview whether we understand it or not so my goal is achieved.
How is your project tied to the Circa x Dazed Class of 20:21 theme of ‘Communion’?:
CHRISTINA ANAGNOSTOU: ‘I am you, you are me’ gives the machine the choice to create from all that is important to me: powerful human connections. Through an Artificial Intelligence algorithm, I fed into the machine images of my friends and family that represent the intimate spiritual experiences I have with them, and let the machine create a blend of all these influences. In this way a new aspect of communion is created, a dynamic exchange between humanity and technology, transcending the bodily function of emotions and spirituality.
Has your work been recognised by any public bodies or organisations in the past?
CHRISTINA ANAGNOSTOU: I recently received the LUX Best Moving Image Award for my final project ‘I looked at Myself and Myself stared back at me’ at Wimbledon College of Arts. I was also the youngest artist selected for the group show of Cream Athens: Whipped exhibition at the Coningsby Gallery in 2019.
How would the #CIRCAECONOMY prize of £30,000 impact your future practice?
CHRISTINA ANAGNOSTOU: It would help me get the equipment I need to continue working on digital art making and aim for more high end productions and bigger projects.
What would you do with the money?
CHRISTINA ANAGNOSTOU: I would invest in good equipment that can accommodate digital animations and productions and secure a studio space that I can work at. It would also help me sustain myself and give me time in order to make more art.
If you are awarded the #CIRCAECONOMY prize, how might this affect your community?
CHRISTINA ANAGNOSTOU: It would be an example that anyone can make it if they are persistent and do what they love no matter their background or circumstances.