In her work, Berlin-based artist Patra Akrap focuses on the conceptual and qualitative function of man-made items and the role they play in channeling our perception of ourselves and our surroundings. For her, functionality is not exclusive to usability.
The physical energy of an object is perceived through various factors which lie within the object itself—its form, the materials, the context, and our personal history the experiences we made through life. While trying to decode the meaning of these energies we are subject to a dynamic change process of the context, time and cultural developments.
Old & timeless materials such as porcelain, leather, glass, gold, wood and stone have all strong energetic aspects. Their function, aesthetics and the diverse cultural contexts in which they have been used throughout history are wide spread. On the one side, their characteristics seem to be obvious however, on the other side they evoke subconsciously a different set of characteristics in us, viewers and users alike. For those reasons, Akrap’s objective is to generate an open discourse around artifacts, materials, and their meanings.
The search for balance between art and design charges Akrap’s work with yet another kind of energy. The work is based on research of ancient history, science, alchemy, geometry, nature, art and design history. Her objects convey various layers of meanings, they shift between cultural perception and personal interpretation. Each piece resonates differently with the viewer/user, like a note in a song, or like the voice of a person. They evoke emotions, associations and memories.
“Antiplastification” e.g. returning to a more Earth-based world, is another aspect addressed in her work. Although the materials used are taken from Mother Earth, they have the ability to decompose and turn into harmless rubble or sand and find their way back into nature.