Tomasz Kowalski is a key figure in emerging Polish painting today. His influences owe deep gratitude to the tradition of German Expressionism, Outsider art and esotericism along with Surrealism. The influence of psychedelia and Postmodern American literature feature prominently in his work. This constellation of references share a common representation of a paranoid thinking about reality, full of alternate versions, varying paths and multiple parallel narrations. It is this combination of Kowalski's imagination, his figurative play with abstraction and confident handling of paint that gives his work a unique vitality. His paintings are a micro-utopia, a reflection of a hypothetical reality or simply a representation of what it means to be alive today, right here.
Tomasz Kowalski’s imagery presents a myth-like fantasy, drawn from his own surroundings and memories. A childlike sensitivity emerges; to allow oneself to be lost in the paranoia of deep imagination or hallucinatory visions; the entranced zone. He often examines archetypal representations of objects and situations and their relation to reality by slanting it, and approaching it from from a different angle. A terrain that exists beyond the certainty of past, present and future, a sort of hinterland or gap, in which new forms of knowledge and sensation are revealed. This can be described as an idiomatic structure, a ’world of parts’ which the occasion of an exhibition allows to unlock and allows its elements laid bare and observed.
Tomasz Kowalski (°1984, Szczebrzeszyn, Poland) lives and works in Warsaw and Szczebrzeszyn. Selected solo exhibitions include the Contemporary Art Museum, St. Louis, USA, and Centre for Contemporary Art Ujazdowski Castle, Poland.
Opening reception Thursday 25 January from 6-9 pm