Play on words often hampers understanding. Far be it from me to contribute to render ibscure paintings as serene as these by Marina Saleme. If each pole of the "seem (to be)/ appear" twosome is applicable to the paintings I am to review, I beleive this witty play between poles is also applicable to paintings, rather than only between words.
They seem (to be) because each of Saleme's paitings featutes a shrouded figuration. Given their four sizes, it is even possible to classify the very small pictures as still lives; the small and medium, as landscapes; and the large, as portraits and landscapes.However, the shrouding prevents figures from appearing completely. They are visible as indistinct shapes. They resemble apparitions. A few are disturbing, while others, pleasant dreams. They appeear because only those paintings that insist on becoming visible manage to appear. In fact, even though showoffs-as in the expression "So-and-so is a showoff"- do not appear through exposure, they appear. At a risk of overusing words and metaphors, I wish to suggest the following arthimetical relation in these pictures: the half that does not seem to be gives place to the half that appears, and the half that does not asppear gives place to that which seems to be.
Half this, half that may seem to be a rather unfitting way, though not at all inappropriate, in which to describe Marina Saleme's paintings. While sharing a same unity given by a dominant color, the paintings also contain parts and halves. In other words, they contain a somewhat pictorial archaeology. Therefore, that which was to be exposed is merely a section in a medium that is neither liquid or solid. It comes upon undefined things that draw the viewers eye to an investigation about that which seems to be and that which actually has appeared upon survey, Saleme's serene paintings convey the gentle, patient brushwork with which she soothed disquietude by struggling against the chaos they still feature. The artists work is indeed an archaelogy that doubles as an artistic reconstruction of both feelings and sectioned, discontinuied life experiences. And, if life pften makes it impossible to combine them, art will always prevail as a hope for the life that could have been.