FOUR ARTISTS FROM KRAKÓW WORTH KNOWING
We present four artistic attitudes of selected artists associated with the Academy of Fine Arts in Krakow
‘I claim that art is one of many paths in human search of truth, and it invariably manifests in a conglomerate of science and religion or anti-religion (which is the same in the end).’
Andrzej Bednarczyk (b. 1960 r. in Leśna) – an artist and teacher, professor of fine arts. Since 2020 rector of the Academy of Fine Arts in Kraków. One of the initiators of the Artistic Research Platform, aiming at uniting fine arts with science. Member of the editorial team at the Zeszyty Malarstwa ASP periodical. Member of the International Print Triennial Society in Krakow and the Union of Polish Writers. He has received grants from the Ministry of Culture and National Heritage of the Republic of Poland, and the Pollock-Krasner Foundation in New York. Active in transmedia art. His works have been shown at more than 50 solo exhibitions and more than 200 group shows in 29 countries, and can be found, amongst others, in the collections of the following institutions: The Library of Congress (Washington), British Library (London), Biblioteka Jagiellońska (Krakow), Narodni Galerie (Prague), SMTG (Kraków), Art & Business Club (Poznań), Centrum Rzeźby Polskiej (Orońsko), Muzeum Sztuki Książki (Łódź), Musashino Art University Museum & Library (Tokyo), Oxygen – Biennial Foundation (Győr), Kolekcja Medzinarodne Bienale Drevorez a Drevoryt, Statna Galeria (Banská Bystrica), Stanford University Library (Stanford), The Polish Museum of America (Chicago), Zakład Narodowy im. Ossolińskich (Wrocław), Kulczyk Foundation Collection (Poznań), Kolekcja Fundacji Signum (Poznań), Centrum Kultury I Sztuki in Konin as well as in private collections. He collaborates with the ABC Gallery in Poznań on a regular basis.
Diary of the minotaur, obiect, 164x68x68 cm
Mythological figures are a common feature in Kinga Nowak’s work. She has derived from the field of pure figurative painting a linguistic path of spatial forms pushed to the limits of simplicity which act as an inductor and catalyst for thought on some fundamental questions in anthropology. Simple and apparently clear like elegant mathematical formulas, her latest pieces become radicles of endless routes in the discovery of the rules governing reality.
Kinga Nowak (b. 1977 in Krakow) – a painter and creator of spatial objects; she studied at the Faculty of Painting, Academy of Fine Arts in Krakow (2001), and has worked there since 2002, currently as a professor. She was a visiting lecturer at the University of the Arts, London College of Communication. Her works have been exhibited at numerous shows at home and abroad, including such venues as MOCAK, lokal_30 gallery, and MODEM in Hungary. She has been counted among the most promising artists by 100 Painters of Tomorrow, published by Thames & Hudson. Her poster advertised the 23rd Ludwig van Beethoven Easter Festival. Her works are found in the collections of the Muzeum Narodowe in Gdańsk, Muzeum Fotografii in Kraków as well as in numerous private collections. Since 2015, she has been running, together with Michał Bratko, Widna – a space for artistic activities in Kraków.
Shelf Hommage a Jan Tarasin, photo by Marcin Liminowicz
Eclipse Jan Tarasin, Gallery in Kalisz, photo: Jakub Seydak
In Michał Zawada’s work, art and art-related sciences provide a uniform and indivisible research method. The language of discourse and the language of intuition influence one another, crystallizing into a sort of “artistic essay writing” regardless of whether the final result is an oil painting, a documentary photograph, a video, a text, or a combination of them. His is a language of unceasing reference and contextual sequence.
B. 1985 in Kraków – he studied art history at the Jagiellonian University, and painting at the Academy of Fine Arts in Kraków. Since 2012, he has been working as assistant in Prof. Andrzej Bednarczyk’s studio. Active in painting, photography, and video art. He is interested in contextual activity of visual media and analysing the phenomenon of image and visuality. In his work, he enters into dialogue with the theory of art, visual studies, and anthropology. The cycles he creates tend to refer to the relationship that is formed between the process of producing phantasmatic subjectivity of image and the construction of human identity in historical and social context. He has received a grant from the Republic of Austria. Since 2016, he has been serving as Vice-Dean of the Faculty of Painting, Jan Matejko Academy of Fine Arts in Kraków.
Paint Fantasy as Commodity, oil on canvas, 50×40 cm, 2018
Landscape with Sunset and A Fist, oil on canvas, 70×50 cm, 2019
In his artistic practice, Michał Bratko frequently employs post-Dada absurd, precluding the audience from getting at an ultimate meaning. Absurd has become for him a linguistic method of narrating the world. Though nothing here is real, the appearance of reality is unbearable. Whether it is scientific, artistic or a truth of life, it invariably slips out of hands in Bratko’s work. The vagueness of intriguing phrases as a research method?
B. 1979 in Lublin. He studied at the Faculty of Painting, Academy of Fine Arts in Kraków. Since 2012, he has been working at the Publishing House of the same Academy. In 2019, he obtained his PhD at the Faculty of Art, Pedagogical University in Kraków. Active in painting, object, typography, and graphic design. His graphic designs have been published on several occasions in Print Control, Best Printed Matter form Poland and awarded in the Most Beautiful Book of the Year competition, in the album category. Since 2015, he has been running, together with Kinga Nowak, the Widna Gallery.
C O T O, acrylic on MDF, 43 × 39 × 40 cm, 2019
DAJ-JAD, acrylic on MDF, 297 × 313 × 18 cm, 2019
Translated by Monika Ujma