Aneta Grzeszykowska <br>MAMA

“Mama” is the latest series of photographs by Aneta Grzeszykow­ska, which presents her daugh­ter in the activities with silicone sculpture-​doll – a hyper-​realistic image of the head and body of her mother-​artist. Photographs – color­ful archival and black and white prints, original barite prints – are arran­ged in sequen­ces of events – the scene of burial of the title sculp­ture in the garden begins and ends the series. This seduc­tive and on many levels distur­bing story is charac­teristic for the artist and reminds of her previous (and probably also future) projects. This cor­responds with the dynamics of human life in which suc­ces­sive events arise from one another. “Art is a process shaped by life – not the other way around,” says the artist.  “Mama” takes as its star­ting point one of the fun­damen­tal social relations – the relation­ship of mother and daugh­ter. Grzeszykow­ska creates a poignant camera per­for­mance in which her daugh­ter animates the sculp­tural image of her mother. In this way, clas­sical roles are rever­sed, here we observe the child in the causative role. The mother becomes a doll, and the artist passes her role to her daugh­ter – giving over her own qualities, temp­tations and creative ambitions.

This scenario laun­ches a range of cul­tural and visual associations, from the fetishistic figure of the woman/doll, through psychoanalysis and sur­realism, per­for­mance of the artist’s own body as an image, object and sculp­ture, to a feminist re-​examination of the agency of the woman/mother. As in ear­lier works by Grzeszykow­ska, her discom­posed body is a metaphor for absence, escape from the body as the “pac­kaging of life,” and another chap­ter in a tale of vanishing. The artist remains loyal to the treat­ment of art as a field of existen­tial experien­ces. With her work she also alludes to the call by the philosopher Luce Irigaray, which on the artist’s lips sounds like a self-​fulfilling promise: “Our daugh­ters must sym­bolically bury our experience in order to create a new situation for women.”



exhibitions 2019

Aneta Grzeszykowska


Grzeszykowska may be in charge behind the camera, but she’s also a hostage to her offspring.

Johanna Fateman, The New Yorker



"Mama", like much of Grzeszykowska’s oeuvre, is a form of self-portraiture in which the artist fragments, alters, or replicates her body to induce both humor and horror. By breaking up the human form and personifying its individual parts, the body becomes both self and other, familiar and alien, at the same time.

Ariela Gittlen, Artsy



Simultaneously touching and dark, the images both expand and explode the relationship between mother and daughter, adult and child.

David Frankel, Artforum