Project Arts Centre

Exhibitions

Agnieszka Polska: Softly Spoken

Dates: 19 Apr - 16 Jun

Show Time: 11am - 7pm

 

Project Arts Centre proudly presents the first solo exhibition of Berlin-based Polish artist Agnieszka Polska in Ireland. Staged in two chapters – each showing three looped and consecutively screened video works – the selection contains a mix of early and more recent pieces including her latest film Mirrored Garden. Based on fictional stories blended with elements of science-fiction, the first thematic chapter highlights the ways in which social norms are established and implemented. The second focuses on the civic responsibilities of the artist and the impact they may have on their surroundings.

Agnieszka Polska’s video works often employ the process of montage, combining found and digitally manipulated material and images. Drawing largely on the conventions of documentary, her early works were driven by explorations into the less exposed or forgotten protagonists of postwar art history and the Polish avant-garde, and they possess an archival subconscious that addresses the misunderstandings, misrepresentations, absences, disappearances and errors of human memory. Polska deliberately interferes with the established rules of history making and processes of representation in order to challenge the conventional ‘museum-archive consciousness’ and ‘reshape what has been collected without fear.’

Her recent video works witness a shift in focus towards the complex mechanisms and interplay of visual perception and language. They touch upon contemporary urgencies such as environmental catastrophe, the rise of nationalistic sentiments, and the social responsibility of the individual. Informed by her interest in diverse approaches to quantum theory and soft manipulation techniques such as ASMR (Auto Sensory Meridian Response), Polska’s digitally generated contemplative image/sound-worlds explore sensorial and cognitive borders and the limits of the human mind. The alluring anesthetized voice-overs support the immersive quality of her video environments. The process of immersion becomes a political act, described by Polska as a ‘tool for creating an environment competitive with the environment of seduction that surrounds, for example, organized religions.’

Images: 
Agnieszka Polska, My Little Planet, HD animation (still) 2017
Agnieszka Polska, The New Sun, HD animation (still), 2017
Agnieszka Polska, Guns, HD animation (still), 2014
Agnieszka Polska, I Am the Mouth II, HD video (still) 2014
Courtesy of ŻAK | BRANICKA, Berlin and Overduin & Co., Los Angeles

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‘I focus on differences in scale and try to continuously shift the narrative through different scales. These meditative journeys might start from massive astronomical objects and eventually reach the smallest particles that construct matter, which—in the case of my stories—are always words and letters. The environments I build and describe always have language at their base. This approach derives from the idea that the smallest indistinguishable particles are cloned ideas that function interchangeably in the same way as the letters of the alphabet.’

Agnieszka Polska on the Amorous Ideas Behind Her Award-Winning “Baby-Faced” Star – Interview with Kate Brown

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