Daphne Vitali on roomwithaview

The work roomwithaview began in 2005, when Evanthia Tsantila set about observing and photographing the people and the scenes that were unfolding outside her studio window in Berlin. Just across the street there is a sex shop. The everyday activities that take place in front of the sex shop Erotica arouse the artist’s curiosity, who, acting as a voyeur, is observing and photographing stealthily behind the window curtain.

The artist then processed the photographs that she took, combining them with various texts from the realm of poetry, philosophy, literature, and so forth, seeking mental exchanges between the images she produced and the texts that she chose to accompany them. Thus, she produced a series of electronic messages, each of which consists of a photograph and a text, which she is sending, from 2005 to this day, to a large number of recipients. The artist creates multiple correlations between these two mediums and seeks different levels of reading the messages, opening up the interpretation of both text and image. The message’s subject line is often revealing, since it is a key to reading the relationship that the artist is seeking.

The recipient of the electronic messages becomes a participant and accomplice in the game of voyeurism that the artist has set up. A “secret” conversation is developing between the artist and each recipient, and a series of questions concerning the reality of the image, the object of observation and the relationship between the image and the text arises: Who is the one who is watching? What is he watching? How real is the image? What is the relationship between the image and the text?

Tsantila moves this “room with a view” from the social to the electronic realm, and from there she moves it to the architectural space of the Museum. The presentation of roomwithaview in the museum’s Project Room does not mean the end of message sending. The work is still in progress on the internet.

Daphne Vitali
Athens, 2010

Published in the brochure of the exhibition Evanthia Tsantila - roomwithaview
EMST - National Museum of Contemporary Art, Athens, 2010