Having spent a lot of her time moving from one place to another, Romanian artist Anca Danila loves to talk of the contemporary individual who builds and “puts on” different types of identities – created by external social, cultural or familial factors. There is the “constructed” identity and then there is the “real” one. Anca’s characters are constantly renegotiating the relationship between the two.
“My latest artworks propose a reflection upon identity crisis in the globalised world,” writes the artist, “when more and more people are suffering from depression and anxiety. Within modernity, boundaries are easily dispersed. Ultra-mobility has allowed us fast access to other peoples’ ways of living and at the same time increased our influences. We should ask ourselves why we are in this state of being, and how will it impact the future of our society.”
The identity crisis in Anca’s art is manifested mostly through children and youth, many of them captured in moments of confusion. One set of paintings “Accessing My Own Status” is particularly interesting. Here Anca depicts a real apple, on which she stuck a collage made out of statuses from Facebook. The painted apple appears in front of the characters’ faces, hiding their features and revealing just the following written words – “The words are energy and create realities, it depends only on us how we use them in order to create our own reality. My real identity is hidden in all artworks, leaving only the true one to be visible, through the image painted in oil on canvas.”
“The message on the apple surfaces reveal the true and real identity of the self,” explains Anca. “But due to the collage, the words and the apple lose the meaning or the value they had previously. They conceal the physical identity of the message carrier.” So perhaps it is like that the real identity of the character is obscured and he becomes more inclined to assuming the constructed identity that external forces will now impress upon him.
Born in the beautiful Romanian town of Nasaud in 1982, Anca Danila grew up journeying between Bistrita, Romania and Dublin, Ireland. She started her creative path at the high school Corneliu Baba in Bistrita, later attending City College Dublin School. She moved back to Romania to obtain her BA and MA in Fine Arts from the University of Art and Design in Cluj-Napoca. She maintains an interest in contemporary anthropology, sociology and psychology.
Anca is represented by the Nasui Collection and Gallery in Bucharest. Her works have been exhibited at Ulster Museum (Belfast, Northern Ireland), Art International Zurich (Switzerland), Art Copenhagen (Denmark), White Canvas Gallery (Brisbane, Australia), Start Gallery (Leoben, Austria), Art Basel (Miami, USA) and other venues.
Images used with permission.