Milena Korolczuk <br /> BLUE BIRD

Raster presents the first solo show of works by Milena Korol­czuk (born 1984), an artist originally from Zabłudów, near Białystok in the north-​east of Poland who resides today in Oakland, Califor­nia. Her films and photographs seduce the viewer with their uncanny clarity and maturity. At once emotional and serene, they com­pose a striking and highly charac­teristic por­trait of a new generation of artists. Korol­czuk con­siders the figure of the artist as absurd, char­ged with a con­stant awareness of failure when creating a work of art, with little else left to be enjoyed out­side of the process itself. Her films depict the paradoxical quality of art as a form full of pas­sion and engagement, yet just as full of barren and futile gestures of creativity. The protagonists of her works are often artists them­selves – musicians, sin­gers, dan­cers – whom she engages accor­ding to her own, radical scenario. Choir girls of the Eastern Orthodox church bellow out the tic­king of a clock and David, a rock guitarist, wakes Białostok residents on a winter dawn with a per­for­mance of the rhythm of his own heart­beat. Her newest film, presen­ted at the Raster exhibition, features the young artist placed a spec­tacular desert set­ting, where, in spite of a heat wave of over 50°C, she sets to work creating a remar­kable, immaterial sculp­ture of escalating desert sounds. Music plays a key role in Korolczuk’s works. It serves to pace time, endowing it with a form that can be experien­ced by the senses, while also serving as a metaphor for the pur­suit of life’s rhythm and har­mony. Korol­czuk, who has just embar­ked on an indepen­dent career as an artist, treats art primarily as a field of research on human beings and their relation to time and space.

Her photographs, on the other hand, depict iconic figures of history, philosophy, art, literature and pop cul­ture. These por­traits are formed out of Wonder Bread, created as a side effect of the young artist’s break­fast con­tem­plations – a record of the com­pul­sive activity of idle hands and a mind con­stan­tly on the hunt for ideas.


Milena Korolczuk