NewBridge Project Space, 16 New Bridge St West, Newcastle upon Tyne NE1 8AW

Konrad Smoleński and Honza Zamojski: Transparent

NewBridge Project Space, Newcastle

28 May – 9 July 2016

From the press release

Transparent is a collaborative exhibition from Polish artists, Konrad Smoleński and Honza Zamojski, presented through a multimedia installation and performance. The project has evolved from an initial concept, which sought to explore models of art education that differ from those in the UK: specifically looking at the pedagogical practices of Polish professor, Leszek Knaflewski and his relationship with former students Konrad Smoleński and Honza Zamojski. Leszek Knaflewski sadly passed away in 2014 and the initial project could not be realised.

The project has developed into a collaboration between Smoleński and Zamojski as an experiment into their own artistic practice. Allowing them to take risks outside of a commercial gallery context, relax their everyday practice and redefine their artistic language in order to work together to create a new, communal platform and outlet for the unknown and poetical.

The framework of an institution like University of Arts in Poznań, allowed the relationship between Professor Knaflewski, Smoleński and Zamojski to dynamically thrive and evolve; roles could be reversed and power structure played upon, shifting and removing preponderance. Differences could be shared and considered as a resource.

Knaflewski’s pedagogical ambiguity, his ability to embrace authority and anarchy and to inspire and allow freedom has been influential on Smoleński and Zamojski’s respective practices and on shaping this particular project. By reflecting upon Knaflewski’s and their own methods, they have merged their individual artistic languages to create a fusion: two different set-ups of relations - one based on exchange and order, the other on chaos. Polarities brought to unity.

In this context, the complexity of relationship is seen as a system, therefore Transparent is a response to this relationship and can be thought of as a variable system; it comes on and off with a fluctuating rhythm. The system changes from active to passive and becomes a magazine of information and potential; the readiness of sleeping energy; the stage of becoming; the communion of nothingness.

Transparent features configurations of objects and humans, humans and architecture and exhibits, institutions and individuals. Within a carefully structured environment and a precisely scripted scenario of live action, humans animate the system regardless of bounds to establishment and restrictions. Humans excite the inanimate world to vibrate, bringing a dynamic that makes the system flexible. By employing simple elements like movement, water, rhythm of actions, order and vibrations - the image of potentiality is created, a potentiality that ultimately remains humane. This event is a snapshot - this abstract form of dissected actions and system becomes an anthropological artefact.

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