About Art, 2013

About Art
About Art
About Art
About Art
About Art
About Art
About Art
About Art
About Art
About Art
About Art
About Art
About Art
About Art
About Art
About Art
About Art
About Art
About Art
About Art
About Art
About Art
About Art
About Art
About Art
About Art
About Art
About Art
About Art
About Art
About Art
About Art
About Art
About Art
Exhibition detail
About Art
2013
Curator: Nina Vrbanová
Venue: House of Art, Bratislava, 2013
2013 is the year when visual art records the 100th anniversary of the first assisted readymade object, created and exhibited as an artwork by the foremost representative of Dadaism, Marcel Duchamp (Bicycle Wheel, 1913). The independent exhibition by the postconceptual artist Stano Masár (*1971) in Bratislava’s Dom umenia not only recalls that momentous and historically path-breaking event, which changed the paradigm of art, but also (in)directly reflects upon it at a century’s remove. The exhibition summarises and presents Masár’s visual work over the past 3 years, highlighting the most recent works, unveiled here for the first time, particularly in the fields of object, installation and intermedia. Masár is one of the younger-middle generation of Slovak post- and neoconceptual visual artists whose work is focused on thinking about the immanent sphere of art, hence proceeding from reflection on art history and the specifics of the exhibition space or running. His thematic disposition arises naturally from interest in the key category of space, represented on the one hand by the exhibition space and on the other hand by the space of the artwork in the context of its history or memory. Formally Masár’s work is characterised by expressive purity, or even a depersonalised purism encoding within it the typically cold, indifferent aesthetic space of the white cube gallery or design that is devoid of signature. Objects and installations which are parasitic (in the positive sense) on the gallery space, or which faithfully simulate it, as a rule “come to life” or “expire” at this artist’s hands in an unexpected manner. The element that becomes typical is symbolic visualisation, a kind of animation of the beginnings and ends of things. Here Masár keeps in mind the historic principle of alternate progress and stagnation in art, and also the theme of exclusion from what should be the first and last function of art, communication. The artist lightens the “great” theme of art and its currently critical state with a playful and often visually attractive form that borders on industrial design. Here too the overlap of art and everyday reality, the constant balancing on the edge of the artwork and visual culture or design, is one of the exhibition’s leitmotifs. Masár does not devalue any of these spheres. The goal of his work is ultimately always play, bird’s-eye viewing, and wit, emerging behind the connection of what is seemingly unconnectable (e.g. Malevich’s abstract image treated as a basketball court backboard). The exhibition presents the distinct formal methods in Masár’s work in two linked thematic blocks: the theme of art and the gallery space, and the more broadly defined residential or simply living space. In both cases the typical attributes of the space (works, images, objects, or by contrast a table, chair or radiator) are paradoxical, taken out of proportion, made dysfunctional or deconstructed. One may understand this primarily as a visualisation of non-communication. Precisely that, it would seem, characterises and expresses the situation and state of art “100 years after...” Nina Vrbanová