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Karolina Breguła. 廣場 (Square) at Xawery Dunikowski Museum of Sculpture in Królikarnia, Warsaw
Exhibition at the Xawery Dunikowski Museum of Sculpture at the Królikarnia Palace, Warsaw
6 March 2018 – 27 May 2018
Opening: 4 March 2018, 6 PM
The 2018 exhibition programme at Królikarnia revolves around the theme of sculpture in public space as well as monuments and the reasons why we erect, alter and demolish them. The upcoming events include shows of large-scale sculptures by Agnieszka Brzeżańska and Maurycy Gomulicki as well as the exhibition Monuments in Central and Eastern Europe 1918 – 2018. The cycle is inaugurated by the presentation of Karolina Breguła’s latest project 廣場 (Square).
It is a film story about a small town community. Unexpectedly, a mysterious object hidden in the bushes that grow in a square begins to communicate with the passers-by. Humming silently at first, it then begins to... sing louder and louder. The sound is said to come from a sculpture that cannot be discerned amidst the thicket. It might indeed stand there, all forgotten, as a remnant of the bygone order. Initially, its voice is a source of pleasure, but after a while it begins to get on the town dwellers’ nerves. The lyrics of the song gradually become clearer: “I’d like to ask you a question.” Questions, as we all know, may be uncomfortable. The community’s opposition gradually transmogrifies into organised aggression.
Square 廣場 (Square) was mostly shot in Taiwan, the actors speak Mandarin and Taiwanese. Yet, 廣場 (Square) is not a portrait of the life lived by the people of the Taiwanese town of Tainan, but a universal philosophical parable created by Breguła and devoted to community and fear of disclosing its painful and troublesome secrets. The artist merges different conventions – feature film, musical, and even theatre spectacle footage, thus escaping obviousness in terms of style and interpretation, whilst building a whole from a wide range of varied elements. Several scenes were shot at an
Asian marketplace in Warsaw featuring Chinese and Vietnamese inhabitants of the Polish capital. Here, the camerawork becomes agitated, akin to a documentary footage, and the rhythm is erratic. One of the episodes features the artist, who turns the camera to herself and carries out a desperate performative self-analysis. She manifests the need to take action which she confronts with a sense of helplessness in the face of approaching evil.
The project may function as a feature-length theatrical production, yet at the exhibition at the Museum of Sculpture it adopts the form of a temporally synchronised spatial installation. Presented on 9 separate screens, the scenes are to be viewed in a chronological order, although at times all the episodes become harmonised both at the formal and narrative level. As for the soundtrack, whose particularly interesting feature is music by the Japanese singer and composer Manami Kakudo, the moments of synchronisation bring to life a spatial choral piece audible simultaneously in all five gallery halls.
The poster was created by Jhen-fa Yan, the famous 65 year old Taiwanese master of painted film posters.
The film was produced by Fotoaura Institute of Photography gallery, Tainan, Taiwan.
The main partner of the project is the Adam Mickiewicz Institute.
The project was created within a year-long scholarship of the Ministry of Culture and National Heritage.
Cinematography: Robert Mleczko
Sound: Weronika Raźna
Music: Manami Kakudo
Editing: Stefan Paruch
Trailer of the film is available at: https://youtu.be/EAb7hPJ6ZV8
Book premiere “Karolina Breguła. I Don’t Cry over Sculptures” – breakfast with the artist and contributing authors
Sunday, 15th of April 2018, at 12 PM Noon
Xawery Dunikowski Museum of Sculpture in Królikarnia, Warsaw
Breakfast with Karolina Breguła and authors contributing to the monographic book on the artist’s work – “Karolina Breguła. I Don’t Cry over Sculptures”. The meeting will be an occasion to meet the artist as well as Maria Poprzęcka, Agata Chinowska, Dorota Jarecka, Kuba Mikurda and Agnieszka Rayzacher.
“I Don’t Cry over Sculptures” is a first monographic book dedicated to the oeuvre of Karolina Breguła. It is published with joint effort by Lokal 30 / Lokal Sztuki Foundation and Arsenał Gallery in Białystok. The book’s ambition is to give the reader an in-depth overview of the artist’s oeuvre as well as present critical approach to social and political context of her works.This is provided thanks to contributions by great critics and curators – Maria Poprzęcka, Dorota Jarecka and Agata Chinowska. Cinematrographic aspects of the artist’s works are subject of the interview held with Karolina Breguła by a film expert – Kuba Mikurda.
Meeting with the authors and editors of the book in Xawery Dunikowski Museum of Sculpture in Królikarnia will be an occasion to discuss the film-works by Karolina Breguła in the context of her ongoing exhibition at the museum – “廣場 / Square”.
Karolina Breguła. I Don’t Cry over Sculptures
Authors: Agnieszka Rayzacher, Karolina Breguła, Kuba Mikurda, Agata Chinowska, Dorota Jarecka, Maria Poprzęcka.
Ed. Zuzanna Derlacz, Agnieszka Rayzacher.
Publisher: Lokal 30 / Fundacja Lokal Sztuki and Arsenał Gallery in Białystok, 2017
Karolina Breguła – (b. 1979) Polish contemporary artist working at the crossroads of art and film, active in the fields of installation, happening, video and photography. Breguła first gained broad visibility with a photographic series displayed on hoardings within the campaign Let Them See Us (2003). After that socially engaged project, the artist concentrated on video works (awarded in
the Views 2013 – Deutsche Bank Award competition and at the 19th Contemporary Art Festival Sesc Videobrasil 2015). In 2010, Breguła inaugurated Art Translation Agency, in which specialists from other fields responded to questions related to artworks (al-
though not always according to the established interpretations). Her works from the recent years are situated within the “cine-art” tendency, including: Fire-Followers (2013) – para-documentary story of a town haunted by fires for centuries, The Offence (2013) – addressing the question of control in art, Office for Monument Construction (2016) – devoted to a confrontation with losing one’s home and attempts to redefine one’s identity in a new place, The Tower (2016 ) – addressing the Modernist legacy in Europe, the story portrays a group of people who live together in the same concrete block of flats and plan to build a sugar tower in their estate.
Her works have been shown at exhibitions at: Centre for Contemporary Art Ujazdowski Castle in Warsaw; Kalmar Art Museum, Sweden; Łaźnia Centre for Contemporary Art, Gdańsk; DB Kunsthalle, Berlin; Jewish Museum, New York; Alternative Space Loop, Seoul; Studio Gallery, Warsaw; Göteborg International Biennial for Contemporary Art, Göteborg, amongst other venues.
Her projects from the field of cinematography have been shown at screenings and festivals, such as Gdynia Film Festival; FILMPOLSKA Film Festival, Berlin; FidMarseille Film Festival 2016, Marseille; Kyiv International Short Film Festival 2016; Artists’ Film Biennial, ICA, London. The artist represented Romania at the 55th Venice Art Biennale.