Human Passage

“As you start to walk on the way , the way appears”-Rumi

A longing, a silent movement, as things depart. Gilda Frumkin’s work is realistic while touching the edges of metaphysics, achronously, narratively, poetically.

Objects, active elements, reflections, forms and junctions framed by sea, land, natural landscape and urban retreats.

In their phenomenal stillness, we contemplate. We feel in them the full line of life beating constantly. Still, the artist’s images fix a point of narration.

We suspect a soul’s beat, wanting to express everything under a perfect design and with a certain painting skillfulness, while freezing, remaining silent, observing and listening.

This is where we meet Gilda’s work; a work both metaphysical and elliptical.

The “Human Passage” is a large energy hub for her corpus. It is there that we find her narration condensed, always ready to speak, sometimes resisting loudly as a braided mass.

It knows the passage of humans, it implies their future path, the traces left behind by a moment in time. It then arrives as a photographer ready to collect and isolate remnants and documents. Artfully, it peers into them and depicts them devoutly.

We feel the artist’s cerebration. The viewer stands too, gazing and listening her images’ loneliness, drawing their own inferations, weaving their own narrations.

Meanwhile, her objects are not equated with an “object”. They rather constitute -both for the artist and for the viewer – a spin-off, an outcome or a counterpart. Her bicycles and knobs, her boats and chairs, the constant catharsis of the water, they are all parts of a life affectionately and symbiotically related to the artist. The signifier and the signified sometimes overlap.

And still, in the “Human Passage” the human form remains absent. In a lyrical and maybe even a “Beckettian” landscape, something is missing, implied while expected. Mostly, the human presence.

Nonetheless, the painter remains there, “hidden behind” or gazing exhaustively. Exhausting herself through touching, by poetically observing space, by conferring time, for all that will come, for all that may have passed unintegrated, for everything valued, like a flicker of the “Human Passage”, imprinted on memory.

She insists in isolating in her canvas, elements which bestow her work cosmic scale. The dreaminess in her realistic depiction, is encountered in the “frame-within-the-frame” present in many of her paintings, taking the form of a dream within a dream; of a creator who gazed into naked life under no illusion, and who still let herself to the real and daily experience while creating a personal reality to include the dream within a dream. I cite the following poem by Edgar Allan Poe, reminding me of Gilda’s course of life.

“Dream within a Dream”

Take this kiss upon the brow!

And, in parting from you now,

Thus much let me avow —

You are not wrong, who deem

That my days have been a dream;

Yet if hope has flown away

In a night, or in a day,

In a vision, or in none,

Is it therefore the less gone?

All that we see or seem

Is but a dream within a dream.


I stand amid the roar

Of a surf-tormented shore,

And I hold within my hand

Grains of the golden sand —

How few! yet how they creep

Through my fingers to the deep,

While I weep — while I weep!

O God! Can I not grasp

Them with a tighter clasp?

O God! can I not save

One from the pitiless wave?

Is all that we see or seem

But a dream within a dream?


Self-taught and tender but with will made of stone, she works constantly to conquer her mediums of expression and her own idiom, both within and outside her “time”, her national identity, and the body of the family; in her own light, within her own gush, with incessant oomph. In this particular exhibition, Gilda shares a reflective work of high aesthetic enjoyment, allowing for multiple and flexible usages and experiences by the viewer.

Γεωργία Τρούλη
Visual Artist-Curator

«Ι know you are tired but come, this is the way»-Rumi