Kraków: “Horror Picture Show” – exhibition
December 6, 2019 - January 19, 2020
Agata Kus, Hounds of Love, 2014, oil / canvas, 140 × 200 cm, Dell’Arte Foundation collection
HORROR PICTURE SHOW
Opening: 6 December 2019 (Friday) 6 p.m., free entry
This is the first major showcase of paintings and ceramics by the young Krakow artist Agata Kus. Over 100 artworks spanning the 2009–2019 period will be displayed at the exhibition. About a dozen of them were created specifically for this occasion.
The title of the exhibition is a reference to The Rocky Horror Picture Show, a 1975 American musical film. This way the artist implies that here we are dealing with the kind of art that has the capacity to stir contradictory emotions – anxiety, but also glee. Her colourful paintings – much like cinematic tales – create complex, often contextually interrelated narratives, replete with people, animals and objects.
Agata Kus’s paintings are characterised by confident and energetic brush strokes. Her expressive way of painting produces collages in which the artist juxtaposes different freeze-frames, which she selects and compiles intuitively. Resulting combinations present a multi-layered and unconventional narrative. The artist’s jumping-off points are movie stills and pictures found on the Internet or in a family album, taken by her or her friends; her key motifs are people and animals. The latter serve as symbols, hinting at certain human character traits. The titles of the artworks or fragments of poems incorporated in the paintings like catchphrases provide additional context for interpretation.
Agata Kus (born in 1987) is a painter and a drawing, collage and video artist. She graduated from the Academy of Fine Arts in Krakow (the Faculty of Painting, Professor Leszek Misiak’s studio) in 2012. She received her PhD from the same university in 2018. At the International Media Art Biennale WRO 2015, Agata Kus won the Grand Prize. In 2017, she was nominated for the Views Deutsche Bank and Zachęta – National Gallery of Art Award. In 2011 and 2018, she was shortlisted for the Vordemberge-Gildewart Foundation Award. Her works may be found in the collections of the MOCAK Museum of Contemporary Art in Krakow and the National Museum in Gdańsk as well as in many private collections.