Irmina Staś
Martyna Ścibior
Zuzanna Ziółkowska

The Guts

July 3  –  August 23, 2014

The latest exhibition at Monopol presents the output of three young artists, namely Irmina Staś, Martyna Ścibior and Zuzanna Ziółkowska. The Guts title means in the Old Polish language entrails, or viscera, suggesting reference to the biological and the corporal. At the same time, however, this very word is charged with existential anxiety. In the presented paintings organic structures resembling organs and cells of the human body become a symbolic presentation of mental states, emotions, and relations with the environment.

Irmina Staś persistently calls all her works ‘Organism’, giving them subsequent numbers, just as if they belonged to a catalogue of biological specimen. Her cycle illustrates organic forms closed in their own world of mutual interrelations. Her paintings impress and fascinate viewers with great harmony of coexisting beings, their richness and diversity. But at the same time they, they evoke anxiety because of the selfcontainedness of natural processes, their inevitability, and ruthlessness towards us.

Martyna Ścibior’s works are a collection of biomorphic interpretations of her own experience and observation of the environment. Particular stories in her paintings expand just like proliferating cells, thickening or disappearing all of a sudden in the space. Nail polish used here as a painting material as well as meticulously knitted patterns direct the interpretation towards feminine motifs. The artist analyses her position in a system of interrelated individuals and events that individually mean little, but whose mutual relations are truly inscrutable. Zuzanna Ziółkowska is looking for the lifegiving energy in abstract forms. Her paintings bleed with intense reds or secrete multicoloured fluorescent juices. It might seem that the artist just allows paints to freely fill her canvas, creating the impression of movement and life. But in reality she tries to explore what originates in ourselves from experience and memory, and what is rooted in dark atavistic reflexes. The extravaganza of colours and textures is compelling and disturbing at the same time at the very thought of strangeness of what fills our own bodies.

Works presented intrigue with closeness of abstract painting that by definition refers to the intellect and imagination to purely functional images known from biology atlases or microscope photographs. In an only partially deliberate manner we use the same forms, shapes and textures we are built of in order to describe something that is commonly believed to be nonmaterial.