Portraits is a solo exhibition of Wyn Geleynse’s recent multimedia and video work. As part of an ongoing investigation of personality through creative forms of documentation, this body of work comprises several “portrait installations.” Each installation is a filmic rendering of an individual recounting a story, which is then projected onto a meticulously crafted diorama, morphing the two-dimensional medium of projection into a three-dimensional sculptural installation.
Central to the conceptual underpinnings of these “portrait installations” is Geleynse’s sustained interest in and engagement with idiosyncrasy. A series of raconteurs regale the viewer with personal narratives, undirected by Geleynse who, in creating these portraits, acts more as a passive observer than an orchestrating director.
The agency that each of Geleynse’s sitters enjoys is reflected in the ease with which their stories unfold. Accentuated by the diorama, the narratives take commonplace and largely unremarkable domestic spaces as their settings; they are animated by the content of the stories rather than a sensational situation.
Portraits is a technically novel exhibition that provokes compelling conceptual reconsiderations of the limits of traditional portraiture. Here, the sitters tell their stories visually through their person, resisting the subject passivity typified by portraiture.