Marcin Maciejowski: Rephrase It Positively

22 June - 3 August 2018
Installation Views
Press release

Gallery Baton is pleased to present Marcin Maciejowski's solo exhibition, “Rephrase it Positively”, from June 22 through August 3, 2018. It is Gallery Baton’s inaugural exhibition in Hannam-dong since relocating from Apgujeong-dong.  As Maciejowski's first exhibition in Korea, “Rephrase it Positively” will survey his works from the past decade as well as showcase a large selection of paintings from his newest series.

Marcin Maciejowski uses images from the media or personal photo collection to create new realities on canvas. His experience working as an illustrator in Poland allows him to gain inspiration from various resources, such as advertisements, posters, cartoons or illustrations.  The intimate yet unfamiliar works, which combines existing imageries with sophisticated brush strokes, have iconic features that generate a distinctive tone.

Marcin Maciejowski, whose practice touches upon contemporary issues is noted for paintings that reflects reality and present situations. He pays attention to the fact that people grasp the world through a specific window - mass media. Instead of merely responding to one particular event, he attempts not only to disclose a hidden truth but also to investigate the mechanism how the media reproduces actual events. Thus, Maciejowski’s perspective and approaches, which can be defined as ‘second-hand reality’ play a role in unveiling the hidden reality, rather than looking at it negatively or critically.

Regarding techniques, Maciejowski applies variations such as omitting unnecessary details or shifting shapes onto selected original images. Through a simplified palette, quick sketches, clear outlines and an intuitive background depiction, his straightforward and explicit style of painting enables the reprocessed contemporary issues to cast off their rigid elements. Notably, his playful approach of directly inserting texts in paintings is Maciejowski’s signature. Lines in speech bubbles are either quoted sentences or the artist’s phrases; he sometimes uses them to support the implication of the paintings or to cloud the main issues by creating dual meanings. Maciejowski will present his diverse works from 2004 to the present in one place. It will be an opportunity for spectators to encounter the current state of Eastern Europe and Poland’s art which continually broadens its horizons as one of the principal axes of European contemporary art from a few decades ago.

Maciejowski studied at the architecture department of the Kraków University of Technology and continued his higher education at the Graphics Design Department at the Academy of Fine Arts in Kraków. He has held solo exhibitions at prestigious European museums including Baltic Center for Contemporary Art, UK (2013) and The National Museum, Poland (2013). He also has been a representative artist of prominent galleries such as Thaddaeus Ropac (Paris) and Meyer Kainer (Vienna) in Europe. ‘Grupa Ladnie,’ an artist group he established with his colleagues including Wilhelm Sasnal (b. 1972) in 1996, has stood out as a crucial association for Eastern European contemporary art and it has contributed to strengthening Maciejowski’s reputation and recognition in the global art world.