The Promised Land

31-08 - 27-09-2019

Opening: 31.08. 2019, 7.00 p.m.
Curator: Agnieszka Gołębiewska

We are looking at the dark and wrinkled surface of the ocean. Dim and disturbing, as if from Stanisław Lem’s Solaris, it turns out to be a photographed slice of flesh. We are constantly moving away from nature, even though we know that we need it to live. And to survive. However, we keep exploiting it — we eat more and more meat, choke oceans with plastic, buy and consume without moderation, as if we perversely wanted to see visions of the film apocalypse come true.

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The Promised Land, the land allegedly given to us to have a command over it, as it is laid in the Bible – which we do by exploiting and destroying it. Much rather it is a Promised Land from Stanislaw Reymont’s story, in which the city and the artificially created unfair system, devoured the masses like a hungry monster with gargantuan appetite. Today, the human treats other species in a similar way by killing them for meat, for fun, poisoning them with plastic, abusing them in laboratories.

Sylwia Solak is interested in our relations with nature. We are used to seeing ourselves as winners, conquerors and colonizers. The artist is fascinated with the cartography of such conquests as written in the organic quality of furs, the texture of meat and close-ups of rawhides. As a gesture of respect for the animals, she had those furs tanned which for hunters are only a waste. All these are images of something whose origin we do not want to know today. And yet this call of the wild is part of our nature.

Sylwia Solak, a painter and graphic artist, creates her works in stages, like layers of soil in the forest — she draws on photographs, creates etchings on digital prints, scans, edits, draws and paints again. The artist shows us the texture of forest litter, a forgotten trail in the wilderness covered with leaves and broken branches. The raw, large format charcoal sketch is only apparently a straightforward gesture of the artist, being in fact a firm statement of devotion to the wildness in the most honest way.
So let’s follow Sylwia into the wilderness

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