Reverse Fireworks In Slow Motion | Kostas Lambridis

AERIAL SHELL BAR 2023 Aluminum, Steel, Metal from Car Parts (VW Beetle & Citroen 2 CVs) Glistening polished aluminium and steel components weave a captivating tale. Conjuring visions of automotive wonders as well as medieval and steampunk aesthetics, “aerial shell” exudes an air of antiquity akin to chariots and ancient contraptions. It is a visual voyage that pays homage to the spirit of invention of previous eras while at the same time offering something totally futuristic. “aerial shell”’s journey began as an exploration of metal, mainly concerning intricate car parts. Lambridis took apart a friend’s VW Beetle for repair (returning it eventually in better condition) but was left with an assortment of old and malfunctioning parts from which this sculptural mechanism was born. The artist then visited scrap yards and found many parts from old Citroën 2CVs, a ubiquitous car across Greece that holds tremendous nostalgic power. When the parts were combined, an organic spiral pattern unexpectedly began to materialise. However, the spiral motif transcends, as it is a functional artwork that opens from both front and back, unveiling a bar space for serving - a testament to form meeting function in a seamless union. Replete with alchemical symbolism, hard steel casing gives way internally to softer copper, a metaphor for the transition of states.


If you’ve ever seen the film Akira, one of the more memorable scenes is near the end when Tetsuo starts absorbing Tokyo and grows into a giant disfigured collage. There’s a similar effect going on with Reverse Fireworks In Slow Motion by Kostas Lambridis at Carpenters Workshop Gallery in NYC. Chairs, tables and light fixtures take shape from fragments of other bits fused together. These pieces are by no means chaotically hacked together with screws and hot glue. Lambridis and his team of craftsman skillfully feather together vintage and new elements into still recognizable forms.

Most of the pieces in the show stick to a single material type, for instance only wood or just metals. Within those boundaries, Lambridis blends a wide range of surface textures. For the large table, Fused Before Charred, delicate carved wood panels and sections of densely pattered veneer inlays collide against pieces of raw oriented strand board.

The standout piece of the show is Aerial Shell, a metal bar incorporating some vintage car parts. The nautilus shell shaped cabinet is partially made from the front fender of a vintage VW Beetle and doors from a Citroën 2CV.

There’s quite a few layer of this show to appreciate, I like that it contrasts the current design style fixation for clean chunky shapes. Also the fearless combination of elements from different time periods. I’m hesitant to rely on the over used ‘remix’ term but this show but Lambridis really puts his own spin on it here.

Photos and Intro Text: Dave Pinter
Additional Text: Carpenters Workshop Gallery

Full Description

In this show, Kostas Lambridis reveals himself as a pyro-technician. Lambridis assembles alloy and catalyst, playing with fire, as it were, given the visual risk of his eclectic creations. The artist employs the firework as an analogy, presenting a philosophical deconstruction of its elemental components. Caught and frozen at that critical moment of explosion when a spark has reached the apex of its bloom, the reverse firework post ignites, working backward from the moment of combustion. from spark to fuse. In turn, Lambridis moves away from his multi-referential, materially varied assemblages, challenging his practice into a condensed fuse Probing the idea of mono-material wood, plastic, metal, minerals Lambridis upsets the logic of the maximalist, establishing singular materials as fonts of possibility and releasing their potential energy.

At the core of Lambridis’s practice lies a passion for materials: their textures associations, and histories unfolding as layers of referentiality. Lambridis’s decadent artistry is one of equality. High and low’ cultures are both given presence, prominence, and equal consideration to all as emblems of the industrial and natural world. For Lambridis, there is no hierarchy in these choices; each material is revered for its own role in the past, present, and future.

Lambridis’s sculptures are a product and perfect expression of the zeitgeist in which the artist lives. In this show, the works are simultaneously self-contained and liberated; now unbeholden to other material entanglements, the sculptures do not aim to push the formal possibilities of design but rather seek to redefine the histories of their constituent parts. Lambridis’s true subject is the creation process within his repository of visual references and his rebellious, rapturous investigative process.