Organized by the Bucharest-based curatorial initiative Salonul de proiecte, “Small Issues, Treasured Issues” delivers a loving ode to the late artist Ionuț Cioană (1980–2020), who practiced below the nom de plume Mircea Nicolae, a mixture of the names of two of his favourite writers: Mircea Eliade and Nicolae Labiș. In Timișoara’s barely derelict former garrison, A4-size sheets flank the partitions of each exhibition room. Every comprises a title, an outline, and not less than one colour picture, parts of Nicolae’s long-running physique of weblog entries, 100, 2007–10. The photographs vary from set up pictures of Nicolae’s works, to a photograph of a rubbish can in a public park with thick white cursive studying “un câine” (a canine), to what the artist describes as recollections of his girlfriends previous, akin to a single strawberry in a plastic bag and the documentation of a growing pores and skin mycosis.
In his works, Nicolae steadily departed from straight information. The fifty-five-minute movie Romanian Kiosk Firm, 2010, takes occasional liberties because it narrates the muddled historical past of the artist’s household enterprise setting up kiosks. Included anecdotes contact on his father’s alcoholism and his mom’s love for fancy high-heels, set towards a casual stock of Bucharest’s city structure. Accompanied by varnished metal-and-glass sculptures mimicking the buildings, the movie serves as a chronicle of Romania’s transition to capitalism. However simply as in Prosthetic for a Damaged Stone, 2010, a plywood surrogate for a rock’s lacking half, Nicolae’s energy lies in discovering the potential poetry within the bizarre whereas nonetheless sustaining a distance some may see as cynical.