Powder-coated colours of steel-poles shape a centralized geometric form in Białystok - Prezemek Pyszczek’s first solo exhibition in Canada. Heavily influenced by the architectural and civic structures from his birth town Białystok in Poland, Pyszczek builds a colourful, sprawling and unified sculpture that simultaneously captures a conformity and resistance to public housing infra-structures in Communist Poland, which turned from grey into an explosion of colour post the fall of the Iron Curtain.
Pyszczek’s palette is compiled from these colourful reprisals of civic space as residential concrete blocks were painted in an array of pastel hues with the structure of his sculptures based on architectural details. The lattice of hand railings, the flourishes in balcony designs and the patterning of fencing and other public to private barriers are references for Pyszczek abstracted forms. The shape comes first and then colour is applied - reflective of the artist’s own encounter with Białystok, as a measuring of time and an articulation of history.
The exhibition title is itself nostalgic in alluding to the artist’s birthplace, his childhood before his family immigrated to Winnipeg, Canada and before his return to Poland after the collapse of communism. This reflection on his childhood home is mediated and doubled in the formal construction of the exhibition, which is an allusion and amalgamation of vintage playground jungle gyms. The form is rigid yet twisted - narrowly escaping the childhood filter of a colourless past retuned as an out-pouring of collective colours.
Przemek Pyszczek is a Polish-born, Canadian-raised artist who is currently based in Berlin. Through architecturally inspired sculptures, installations and paintings Pyszczek’s work traces Poland’s transition since the fall of the iron curtain and also serves as an ongoing journey to rediscover his own past. He obtained his Bachelor of Environmental Design from the University of Manitoba in 2007. Pyszczek’s work has been exhibited in numerous solo and group exhibitions, most recently presenting a solo exhibition at Galerie Derouillon, Paris. His work has been included in Forever Never Comes, Museo Archeologico e d’Arte della Maremma, Grosseto, Italy; 1989 Belenius, Stockholm; Sandomir, Nicodim Gallery, Los Angeles; Industrius, Window Gallery, Winnipeg; Building Systems, Berthold Pott, Cologne; and Corporalitas, Open Forum, Berlin.