David Krňanský: The seven-handed wizard

26. 1. 2015 - 22. 3. 2015

Opening: 26. 1. 2015 

Curator: Michal Novotný

Centre for Contemporary Art FUTURA, Holečkova 49, Praha 5




I remember, that might have been already two years ago when we started to speak with David about his work. Several times he used the metaphor "compost of modernity". At that time he worked using the morphology of modernity, however, a modernity that came to a stage when its ideological radicality as a representation with independent rules of volumes and surfaces abstracted from reality was coming back to the real through the mediation of design. But this devaluation also purifies it from the ideological pathos, made it be, somehow only at this point, a pure form, which we can use with complete freedom.
Back then David was using a comic figure, which was by its presence disturbing the abstract forms, literally playing with them, or taking their shape. The connection of serious and humorous, irony and ridiculing communicates in the same manner as cartoon a critical position, an opinion. Its aim is again to set free the contents from a clear meaning. As only in this lack of clarity and ambiguity they might be still able to say something to us.

We call the magician drawing "a character" and ascribe it certain human properties, although we know it is not alive. Also, the styrofoam shelving units aren't real. Although it does have the same volume and size, it remains only a stage set. But concurrently the artwork and the medium - a structure for an archive, material we have to, as David says, physically "go through" and which is a collective memory. But the content of this archive is physically missing. The shelving unit itself as a structure but also a present material artwork the actual result of going through that content. The faces somehow arise from the shelves but are imprinted inside them. Only the magician is walking free on the surface.

The aluminium plates associate with their format the traditional contradictions between painting and image. Yet their surface is covered with the coating for public lightning lamps that avoids the fly posting and graffiti. Again we are facing certain reversibility - an object playing with the ambiguity of its own identity. The paint doesn't represent anything, it only serves as aggressive protection of its existence, such as some architectonical elements, that prevents access, are a sort of anti-space, but consequently, a space per se, asking for an existence without the use of humans.

An artwork perhaps must be always unfinished, incomplete, independent and unreal.
This ambiguity, that is essential, however, doesn't relate to how does "that" looks like, but rather in which way do we relate to "that". The relation of "using", how we relate to "the objects", is the murder of the art. It removes the existence, that art doesn't have but that demands from us.