In ‘Triangular surface areas’ Berlin based sculptor, Anna Gatjal, presents a new installation that explores the complex relationship between the material world with its physical limitations and the seemingly unlimited possibilities of the mathematical and virtual realms. The installation continues Gatjal’s fascination with the sublime beauty and symmetry of classical geometry. The five ‘Platonic solids’ and the thirteen ‘Archimedean solids’, named after the Greek philosophers Plato and Archimedes who postulated that the universe and all the elements within it were constructed from these regular solids.

Gatjal presents two sculptures sitting side-by-side on a plinth. One is an icosahedron, a regular solid with twenty identical triangular faces carved in marble. The other a truncated icosahedron, a convex solid composed of twelve regular pentagonal faces, and twenty regular hexagonal faces. This is the same form used to create both geodesic domes and footballs. In fact, on closer inspection the object is revealed as an inverted, plastic football. Turning the football inside out emphasises not only the underlying geometry, but also the method of its actual manufacture.

The spherical forms are echoed in a digital animation of a revolving geometrically constructed sphere. As it revolves constantly changing complex numbers radiate out from the surface. Words and phrases, referring to both science and politics, appear over the virtual sphere as if being typed out. The effect is reminiscent of scenes from apocalyptic movies such as Dr Strangelove or War Games where virtual images of the earth map out encroaching nuclear Armageddon. The whole installation is suggestive of the complex and uneasy relationship between science, technology, the military-industrial combine, and world politics.

Gatjal describes herself as an exponent of ‘Minimal Pop’. As well as using complex geometry, her subjects are often borrowed from the literature of science fiction. In many of her installations, larger-than-life comic book characters enter into a dialogue with 3D animated video clips. Reality and virtuality flow into each other in Gatjal’s work: her worlds, whether apparently extra-terrestrial or underwater, revel in the possibilities of exploring strange new dimensions whilst still being full aware of the limitations and problems of everyday life.

Anna Gatjal lives and works in Berlin. She studied at the Akademie der Bildenden Künste Karlsruhe, Karlsruhe, Germany (1990-96), and undertook an MA in Fine Art at the Royal College of Art, London (1998-2000). Recent exhibitions include ‘Brot&Spiele’, Haus am Lützowplatz, Berlin, ‘Toy, Toy, Toy Forever’, Gallery Isabelle Gabrijel, Berlin (2016), ‘vacuum with a sparse layer of probability waves #1’, studio m_23, Berlin, and ‘Berg Berg’, MEINBLAU, Berlin (2015).