The Praxis with Earth was a performance that Rinos Stefani did in 10/4/1991 at Apocalypse Gallery, Nicosia, one of the first art performances in Cyprus. Stefani also showed a video where he was performing a Praxis with Earth.
Caroline Frances Vargas, Ohio, 2005
Description of Praxis with Earth
In Praxis with Earth, Stefani filled the gallery with earth, thus bringing the elemental nature from outside into the inside cultural space. He then placed a large glass, from floor to ceiling, dividing the room in two halves; one half for the audience and the other half for himself. He walked in circles a few times holding in front of him a large mask that was part of a tree trunk. For about three minutes he stood in front of the glass looking at the audience in an examining manner. Finally he mixed earth and water, he made mud with which he covered the whole glass, thus blocking visual contact with the audience. The whole action took about 15 minutes.
The game of communication with the audience
Despite polysemy in his work, Stefani’s performance is simple and compact. The earth, his basic material has a strong symbolism. By covering the glass with mud the artist establishes a game of communication with his audience. He deals with fundamental issues of contemporary civilization and puts into question the communicative role of art. He poses questions about the nature and significance of art and its relation with play as a cultural phenomenon. Rinos Stefani’s Praxis with Earth deals with the enigma of Homo Ludens.