Pavla Sceranková & Dušan Zahoranský

Work on the Future

Pavla Sceranková & Dušan Zahoranský / Work on the Future

05.06.2019 - 17.08.2019

Fait Gallery, Ve Vaňkovce 2, Brno

Opening: 5. 6. 2019 at 7 pm

Curator: Václav Janoščík

Exhibition architect: David Fesl


In what way, within which conditions and relations do we lend shape to the world with what we actually do? Not only the world as we know it but also the world which we would like to share, which is worth working for. This is the “work on the future” in the title of the exhibition of Pavla Sceranková and Dušan Zahoranský who invited two guests to take part, Václav Janoščík and David Fesl. The exhibition is not a retrospective, on the contrary: it presents brand new works connected, on the one hand, with the subject of work and its sharing, and on the other with the issue of communication and its breakdown. Both work and communication are not just concepts but are materialized at the exhibition in the form of zones for work, relaxation and meetings. The exhibition is thus not only the largest one of both artists to date; it also invites the audience to a more intimate encounter with art while presenting the opportunity to enter the space of work and communication.

Jan Nálevka / And now let’s finally turn the page


Fait Gallery, Ve Vaňkovce 2, Brno

opening: 23. 5. 2018 at 7 pm

curator: Jiří Ptáček
exhibition architect: Tomáš Džadoň

A grid becomes a symbol of organisation in the most general sense of the word, a kind of order of things, and at a symbolic level also a world order. 

- Jan Nálevka

The A4 format paper is the most widespread kind of paper in both households and offices. We use it to print ordinary documents, for photocopying, notes and sketches. It is also used for the printing of formal court decisions, meals of the day in cheap restaurants and university theses, as it is the only format with which one can be sure that the diploma work will be bound in covers imitating leather as late as an hour before the deadline. Files for this size are available from any stationery shop, and millions of sheets pile up in millions of metres of office archives. Text editors now offer the digital version of A4… The standardized A4 format is guaranteed by the ISO 216 international standard for paper of the A, B and C categories. The first attempts at standardisation go back to France during the Revolution in the late 18th century. The main advantage of this proportion of sides is the simple division in halves after which the sheets retain the same proportion of sides. The major benefit of the adoption and dissemination of the standard was its compatibility and coordination of the manufacture of a whole spectrum of products. Nowadays, when you ask someone to picture a “common sheet of paper”, they will most probably visualize paper of the A4 format. 

When lining A4 sheets, Jan Nálevka adjusts the drawing to the standard. He opts for a neutral handwriting, and steps back as an artist. He uses blue ballpoint pens in order to emphasise office work where the compliance with prescribed administration procedures is essential. Reams of paper covered in lines and square grids are virtually indiscernible from mass-produced prints. And since Nálevka further segments the paper with lines and square grids, while in fact still preparing it for writing and drawing, he can talk about the creation of “standardised blankness”, a blankness achieved through work. Its volume, as well as the time it requires, are not proportionate to the result. However, in their reflection there is always space to realise the absurd nature of this activity. Nálevka’s drawings can thus be considered implicitly critical, yet at a more general level they are abstract visualizations of an order introduced into art, or into a work activity as such. And in its ultimate form, the segmented A4 paper format is a symbolic representative of standards predestining our factual possibilities, shaping our perception and behaviour, and providing a basis for our imagination in the private and social dimension of life. 

The And now, finally, let’s finally turn the page exhibition can be understood as a public audit due to which the material that in the previous decade had progressively emerged at preliminary, autonomous and semi-autonomous presentations was gathered in a single place. And although the show exclusively presents drawings from the years 2009—2018, it captures Nálevka’s thinking concerning the external conditions of the organisation of human life. It is divided into three basic sections. The first one observes the subjects of the basic organisation plan and “standardised blankness” as the consequences of the adopted  art-work load. In the second section, the issue of the time invested in the drawings, and lost, comes to the fore. Finally, in the last section Nálevka abandons the point of view of an individual and with plans drawn over reproductions of books on modernist art comments on the historical and possible future social orders. 


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