September 5, 2014
Opening: 11.07.2014, 6.00 pm
Curator: Justyna Wesołowska
Partner: Centre for Contemporary Art Ujazdowski Castle
Be present then awhile, and assist me, you daughters of Jupiter, while I make it out that there is no way to that so much famed wisdom, nor access to that fortress as they call it of happiness, but under the banner of Folly.
What Tomek Mróz is showing at the Foksal Gallery is a picture of an artist, weary of, in retreat from, and aghast at, the contemporary pragmatic approach to the profession. His spectacular, Hollywoodesque project for the gallery is a counterpoise to engaged and over-intellectualised art. The human being stands at the centre of his interest, along with his dissent as regards contemporary engagement and participation in public life. His project broaches a problem which enjoys no popularity in today’s world, the problem of depression, of escaping from that world, of defeat. We have the impression that the construction of the fairy-tale-cum-film world at the Foksal is a fantasy made manifest, a fantasy spun around hide-outs, where a sense of safety and calm wins out over fear of exclusion and claustrophobia. It seems that only the realisation of the entire project, the filling of the space with props from dreams and nightmares, the visualisation of every phobia is able to save the artist from self-annihilation. As so often happens in fairy tales, only a confrontation with pain and suffering brings catharsis and hope. The title of the exhibition alludes to the world of nature wherein Mróz seeks balance. The turtle is an animal known for making no distinction between waking and dreaming … and it is that state of suspension which serves the artist as a formula for surviving.
Tomasz Mróz was born in 1979 in Opole and he currently lives and works in Warsaw. A graduate of the Poznań Academy, now University, of Fine Arts, he was a co-founder of the Penerstwo art group. His work has been presented at numerous exhibitions, including Crimestory at the Znaki Czasu Centre of Contempor ary Art, Torun (2014); God Hasn’t Made a Mistake Mother [sic], Gdańsk City Gallery (2013); Skontrum Evolutions, the Xawery Dunikowski Sculpture Museum, Warsaw (2012); Happiness Is a Warm Gun, Rizzordi Art Foundation, St. Petersburg (2012); Arbeitsdisziplin. The Spirit of Art in Poznań around 2012, the Arsenal Municipal Gallery, Poznań (2012); Coming Soon, the Temporary Gallery, Cologne (2011); E.Y.M/ B.B, Platán Galéria, Budapest (2011); Pure-Evil III or A Bullet in the Brain for Myself, Arsenal Gallery, Białystok (2008); OMMMMMM…, BWA, Zielona Góra (2008); Establishment (as a source of sufferings), Centre for Contemporary Art Ujazdowski Castle (2008).