“Invisible Cities” is an exhibition opening a new project by Katarzyna Kowalska, dealing with the subject of thinking about the contemporary city.
For the artist, the city is a training ground for experiences, her natural environment, a source of inspiration, a place of observation of the processes taking place in it. She sees the city as a historical, philosophical, cultural and sociological phenomenon, as a changing organism, as well as a code that we have within us. In Kowalska’s paintings we can find a specific difference, the simultaneous use of rigorous geometry and expressive gesture. The geometry is created by the climbing blocks of skyscrapers, it is the business-oriented, cold world of steel and glass. The gesture symbolizes the human factor, a spontaneous, expressive and warm trace of everyday life.
The artist was particularly inspired by the intriguing contrast presented in the book by Italian writer Italo Calvino “Invisible Cities”, where the described phantasmagorical civitates are both credible and imaginary, beautiful, fascinating, alluring and sad, repulsive, depopulated, ruined, happy and damned. The artist, fascinated by the book, decided to transfer this complex way of thinking about a city onto a canvas. She also set herself the goal of showing what is invisible and tissue-forming in metropolises: relations, experiences, memories, dreams, desires and aspirations, without which every city would be just a collection of concrete buildings.
In Kowalska’s new paintings, we will see the quintessence of these thoughts, inspirations and means of artistic expression. Her intuitive perception of space and experience in the world of architectural abstraction will certainly become an intellectual and aesthetic feast for the audience.
Curator: Agnieszka Jachym
Photo: Marta Kammbach