12.05.2021 - 14.08.2021
Fait Gallery, Ve Vaňkovce 2, Brno
Curator: Barbora Kundračíková
Opening day: May 12 2021, 5 pm–9 pm
Even today, we still tend to understand a picture as an autonomous entity, a unique, final object which has a life of its own and naturally separates itself from the whole of the world. For that matter, we have spent a long time pursuing this, so it’s all good! However, there exists a close link between picture and word, including the inner ones. They belong to each other by their very nature, yet we seldom stress that the connection should be direct and, especially, generally accessible so that everybody can go through the same gateway. Then, however, there come moments when a picture communicates nothing but solidarity, shared being and one existence when the picture itself not only moves between horizons and transcends them but it is also absorbed by reality. This fully applies to Petr Veselý’s pictures. Their objectivity involves not only the time dimension but also a transcendental one.
Ernst Gombrich writes in his reflection on illusion that the power of interpretation can’t be overestimated, mentioning J. M. W. Turner whom he views as somebody who deliberately and in favour of what he sees suppresses all he knows about the world. Both are also relevant today, as we are moving on the same border of discernibility. Petr, however, turns not to what he can see but to what he can touch.
The moment of touch is magical, a touch has the power to take life and also to restore it. The laying of hands is an ancient ritual, hands radiate warmth and coolness, recognise, and in some cases also heal. The essence is always the same: the expression of craving for the original, the real, for what is genuine and to what we, at least imaginarily, return. Gombrich does that himself when talking about abstracted forms as a phenomenon of western visual culture which is certainly remarkable yet fatefully lacking any assessment rules. In Petr’s case, however, we move on the opposite side of the spectrum; a picture is an abstract, grey form, yet it is permanently striving at figuration, or evolves from it. At the sane time, what is abandoned calls for attention which is equally reversible, and the movement we perform during its recognition is thus cyclic and without memory. Echoes of objectivity are secondary, yet they have rules – and these manifest themselves in this way.
Petr’s work is about constants which regularly come to the fore. This regards both his poetry and what can be termed the natural life of things. As in a truly home environment things do not just appear but exist, they meander in forms and functions and their being has an order which also involves decline, so they are like this in the artist’s pictures, or rather, his pictures are like that. They show what a close link there is between them and the world if we deliberately insert them in the framework of our existence. Matter captivates.
Petr is aware of this, of course, otherwise he wouldn’t put so much effort into the bridging of the gap between reality and its image, between what has come to pass and what we expect. He also likes to enter this space, shaping it and summarizing it. Medieval altars in museums are the relics of other autonomous worlds, and the objects of the ordinary world devoid of their function are also like that. Naturally, this is an expression of reduction, but also concentration and (controlled) absence which, paradoxically, grows stable in its loss and thus resonates all the more its original function and talent. A hand frozen in motion, a shirt stretched in its bend moving from the field to the picture and beyond expresses this perfectly. As Ivan Blecha writes, “a reflection that the restricted position of the observer (…) leads to a restricted presentation of a thing is wrong and the statement about the necessary non-representationality of some aspects of reality, about its permanent distortion, is in fact unreasoned extrapolation.“ A picture is often the only thing left of something that once existed. It is a notch of a knife in a cupboard.
 E. H. Gombrich. Umění a iluze. Studie o psychologii obrazového znázorňování. Praha 2019, p. 235.
 In the last decades the formative task and nature of “things” has also been resumed by the western philosophical tradition, namely by Bruno Latour and object-oriented ontology (OOO).
 Ivan Blecha. Prostory zjevnosti. Dílo ve struktuře světa. Zlín 2018, p. 129.
Fait Gallery MEM
Božetěchova Street 1 (enstrance from Metodějova Street), Brno
23/5 – 12/9/2013
Opening: 23/5/2013 at 7pm
Curator: Martin Nytra
Lukas Thaler's exhibition titled The Propeller / Vrtule specifically refers to a scene from Michelangelo Antonioni's Blow-Up, where due to a subjective interpretation the propeller becomes an object of quite a different function. This interpretation is redefining the object as an object of an aesthetic and ritual nature. The author borrowed this situation as a pattern to explain the method of his own work, for which it is significant, in addition to the interest in the subject and it’s status (as mentioned before), also conceptual reflection of a painting and a picture as a media and minimalist elliptic form that specifically incorporates and follows the visual characteristic of prefabricated materials creating an impression of rather a sophisticated art object.
In his installations Thaler treats the picture as an unstable concept, in which the painting loses its depicting qualities, and on the other hand, some subjects acquire certain characteristics of the image. By this he tries to deconstruct the relationships of objects to their symbolism and free the process of painting from its dependence on the concepts of visual representations and illusion of reality. The transcendental engagement of the subject into a situation within the frame of painting is replaced by a simple perception of shapes, volumes, textures and colors. The reason for this approach is not only the attention paid to the relationship between the sign and its meaning (which is not a valid permanent reality for the subject), but also the effort to prepare a situation in which the perception of the audience takes place on a purely emotional level.
The actual experience, purified from a symbolic reading, allows to create independent space to play with form and basic means of painting in relation to the classical requirements of abstract painting. However, the scale and resources which the author uses, rather declass the iconic sovereignty and balance the position of the audience. The tendency of ourselves, who are able to see and feel, is to decipher and define this experience, which establishes the hegemony of sign and intellect again. Efforts to forget the learned language and return into a “prenatal stage” of experiencing the reality in a pure, sensual level become a virtually utopian dream. We return back to the propeller.