Revealing Worlds

15 March – 24 April 21

‘Revealing Worlds’ is Artistellar’s first duo show of two emerging artists from Eastern Europe. The Czech artist Filip Svehla and the Slovakian artist Kristina Bukovcakova explore the world around us from two different perspectives. Kristina’s work is dedicated to the world of the natural environment we live in, while Filip’s work is focused on the physicality of our living space, the space we’ve built. At first, their painting styles seem fairly distinct nevertheless, both artists lead their narratives in abstract style.

Kristina’s paintings in the show expressively depict our natural environment, which sometimes seems omnipotent. But in fact, it is vulnerable and fragile. The artist projects her inner fears and anxieties from our climatically challenged, global, and digitalized world. She seeks imaginary shelter as a means of coping with her inner feelings and frights. The artist’s painting practice in the show has indirectly migrated from figurative into a more abstract depiction of nature. Kristina creates fragmented, abstract forms of structures of landscapes, trees, plants, soils, and organisms. Her romanticized vision of the environment makes her subjects sometimes appear as actual characters with facial expressions. Each of these natural ‘characters’ has its own unrecognized stories to tell. Filip’s work, on the other hand, employed a formalistic approach. His painting is reduced to minimalist abstraction reminiscing Joseph Albers or Bridget Riley’s iconic stripe paintings. The artist’s focus is on the exploration of colours in relation to urban space, architecture, and the living space in general. His abstraction stems from both American abstraction and the European school of Bauhaus principles. During his travel to Spain, the artist started to notice the play of light, chipped facades, half demolished houses, and industrial buildings. To strip down the visual space to its very core; form, Filip started to apply thick layers of colours onto the canvas.

Similarly, like Kristina, who explores the structures and fragments of the environment, Filip uses colours to express the sensibility of the physical structures; the surface and the form. His combination of various tones that are very similar is arranged in layers across two canvases, making it a diptych. Filip’s work creates a certain visual disharmony. This idea comes from Filip’s other travels and observation of oriental cultures. The oriental music uses very similar notes in composing, which makes the final tunes sound almost cacophonic. Revealing Worlds is a metaphor for the different spaces and environments we inhabit. It can be the underground world of the soil in a forest or a world of an old chipped façade in Spain. Regardless the world; the natural or man-built, each carries a soul.