5 - 31 october 2009

Wojciech Bąkowski Beauty

It seems that Wojciech Bąkowski will lock himself in his studio without the way out very soon, he will shut out windows, soundproof the small room, separate from light and noise of the city, from the world, to keep it in still frame, in some obscene convulsion, to capture it by storm and to describe penetratingly. The newest works of Wojtek betray vibrating personality of the author, morbid sensitivity of the man who disposes himself on many frequencies simultaneously, absorbs and filtrates omnipresent chaos like catalyst.

“Spoken movies”, which arise consecutively in numbered parts, are the terrain in which Bąkowski tests ways of combining animation and spoken word. In every movie he shifts the gravity in different way, applies different formal solutions and also exercise language testing it’s clearness. In the first three “Movies” one could easily notice that disintegrated poetry of Wojtek has to be “spoken” because a huge part of it’s meanings is contained in the rhythm and melody of the voice. Bąkowski’s recitations reminds simultaneous translation from some mumbling endemic dialect. On literary level they bring associations with Białoszewski, but also Beckett and Joyce. The newest film of Wojtek – “Spoken Movie 4” – is consist of seven quite distinctly marked parts (as former movies were lengthy poems, now we have seven compact verses), it has got an intensive rate, it is black and white, it’s concise language more resembles texts of songs. There is a lot of music in this, fundamentally music dominates here, it arises from overlapping sounds, from short loops, it appears parallel to accumulating images. This is enough of formal aspects. What is in this movie that attracts attention, what is so moving, where the magnetic power is? It seems that for the first time Wojtek so unambiguously reveals himself. “Me” which in previous movies was only the fictional cluster of identities, psychological Frankenstein stitched together from personality of the author, of the old man, the hooligan, the pervert, the mentally handicapped and loser, is singular and honest now. Bąkowski speaks for himself and about himself, more than ever before, maybe apart from some productions of KOT Group… Exhibition in Stereo Gallery is titled like the video work – self-portrait of Bąkowski, it’s soundtrack is based on composition “Piękno” (Beauty) of the first KOT Group’s complement. It is a long video clip in which monotonous bass track and recitation of the short verse are the background of new poetical texts. “Beauty” proves legibly how important in Wojtek’s work are KOT’s achievements. The long-term existence of the group constitutes the backbone of his work, and not, as it could seem, it’s performance’s margin. KOT is Bąkowski, and Bąkowski is KOT. All exhibition is a rare example of author’s realization in one hundred percent, every detail is an effect of his own work. It is of course the show of artistry so esteemed by Wojtek – it is known for a long time that he executes his work with extreme freedom and mastery. Contents carried by “Beauty” are as dazzling as dark and dangerous: “What I don’t tell you and you suspect it’s still nothing … It is much worse. I’m serious …’ declares Bąkowski.

Michał Lasota

  • Wojciech Bąkowski “Beauty”
  • Wojciech Bąkowski “Beauty”
  • Wojciech Bąkowski “Beauty”
  • Wojciech Bąkowski “Beauty”
  • Wojciech Bąkowski “Beauty”