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Ariel Hassan

(1977, Argentina. Lives and works in Australia and Berlin, Germany)

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HFV Project

(36 light box digital transfers 100 x 75 cm, HFV Project website, digital animation projection)

The initials in the title stand for Hypothetical Future Value, a term used in financial investment, redefined in the HFV-Project through presenting abstracted portraits of seemingly emotionless figures that evoke and acknowledge the potential and poignancy of youth, against the passing of time. Those portrayed, suggesting mythological, ancestral or eternal witnesses that exist perennially in youth, symbolise beauty, not subjective beauty, but in a way which follows the origin of the word from koine greek hōraios — that also relates to ‘hour’ or ‘time’. The project’s intent is therefore to capture youth at its best hour. Regardless of circumstances youth exudes a shared sense of extreme idealism that persists even after indoctrination by the laws and conventions of a society. The use of HFV as a nominal also works as a subtle critique on how the world defines material value, as the title itself implies an almost pathological tone. The HFV-portraits are emblems for a hypothetical ‘new’ and ‘more evolved’ (post) human form, in which a state of heterosis is in balance with heritage, and in which the weight of history is inscribed in the faces through painterly marks that act as a new skin or a sort of vivisection; the hypothesis is trying to describe young people that no longer are defined by current laws or descriptions. The people portrayed have been photographed in front of a screen to isolate them from perceived and projected idiosyncratic values, and interwoven with abstract organic fluids that undermine their cultural and socio-economic components, in order to present a more complex yet homogeneous new form.

  • Ariel Hassan