26.02.2020 - 25.07.2020
Fait Gallery, Ve Vaňkovce 2, Brno
Opening: 26. 2. 2020 at 7pm
Curator: Miroslav Ambroz
In my past lives, I was a hunter and a gatherer. I would always start my everyday routine
with decorating tools, weapons and creating musical instruments for myself.
1) Even though you were considered as the creator of spatial objects, in this exhibition your major emphasis is on paintings. What was the impulse?
The new atelier, where for the first time in my life, is light, space and warmth, this helped me to finally start painting. An eternity of horizons was open in front of me, together with two big travels to Columbia and Australia, I understand this happy season as staying on an abandoned island, therefore the name "Two years’ vacation".
2) In 2004 you painted large format canvases "Roads of swifts" and "Mother Earth". In the sametime frame you also painted "Chaple of Karlin", and even before that, "Envelopes" were created, therefore in your own way you are continuing with something that was created long before?
Of course, I was already painting in the '70s during my studies. Back then I inherited very rare pigments from prof. Slánský, which I am using presently. The first time I used them was during my exhibition in Rudolfinum, when there was a need to paint something great for "Silent Hall" and a figure of the central deity arose, which is appearing in my works in different varieties. Connection with the material was always important for me. The type of work on the ground on the non-gesso canvas, together with water diluted pigments and acrylate bonds demanded this physical contact. Even in some places on the paintings, there are my footprints.
A wall painting "Chaple of Karlin" was in somewhat a cleansing exhibition after the floods in 2002, and according to an agreement I had to turn it white. The oldest envelopes date back to 1986. The style of their decoration is connected with the style of "Third rococo" and that epoch is accumulated in my works. In the '90s I created multiple large format envelopes, which I perceived as the object/pictures having multiple-meanings and it opened an inexhaustible line packed into certain cushions, similar to guitars. This is related to my favourite non-standard formats (ovals) and adjusting large canvasses "free" without the stretcher bar.
3) What was most interesting thing about Australia?
First of all never ending space and starry skies. Five weeks, every evening by the fire in the desert. Furthermore, colours and rock paintings as old as 60 000 years. This was the first time I have seen baobabs and eucalypti that were 800 years old, which existed way before the arrival of whites... breathtaking scenery. I brought back a lot of collected materials and natural clay, with which I am painting. Australians have a "story" for each god, they are mostly cautionary stories, which have helped to keep the tribes viable. It appears to me as there are various imaginary divinities, however, they were born from the transcultural backdrop. Something interesting is that the rock paintings and figures on it are very similar all around the world, but I am not the type who would study these things in much detail. On the other hand, I deliberately keep certain blindness, to be astonished, and I would recommend this to consumers. Those who ask too much will learn too much.
4) Some rusty images look a bit apocalyptic, did it have any specific impulse?
"Rusty images" are painted by some rusty mud from a forested swamp in West Czech. In fact, they are ferric nano-shells of microorganisms. I discovered this beautiful colour in the '70s, which came back to me now, to extract it artistically. Thematically, they partly follow the cycle of thermo-drawings "Landscapes from Timelessness" or the cycle of graphics "Giants", where the power of nature is personified into supernatural beings. People desire to witness a miracle or other paranormal acts, and we have this advantage that we can also paint them. Also, people are drawn to the aesthetic of natural disasters and the theatre of extinction. Towards the end however, the road took me elsewhere.
5) When you were in Columbia, did you try yagé -the most renowned shamanic hallucinogen?
I don’t need to check what I suspect. I don't need to meet God. I don't want to upset him. He
could stop passing me.
The interview led Miroslav Ambroz
Fait Gallery PREVIEW
Dominican Square 10, Brno
3/9 – 10/10/2014
Opening: 2/9/2014 at 6pm
Curator: Martin Nytra
The Dead Spots
The work of Kamila Zemková is based on significant interdependence of the personality of the author with her artistic expression, that is characterised by its tendency towards the formal stylization of diary entries. Her continuing interest in situations and tasks experienced in daily reality and inconspicious relationships of the close surroundings stands at the same time for searching of areas dominated by ambiguity and banality. These characteristics are no less charming because of their openness and closeness that enable the artist and her audiences a wide spectrum of approaches and understanding of the art work. The author thus creates conditions for work based on personal experience from close listening to the noteless impressions of the surrounding landscape and the acquisition of this experience through awareness of the subjective territory of her perception and her own imagination. Zemková avoids to name things and aims towards specific, easily understandable meanings. She puts greater emphasis on the imagination of the mind and the emotional level of the perception of the art work. Paradoxically, however, her latest work is relatively specific, conceptually coherent and its realistic design might enable the audience to read the shortcuts to the understanding. Neverthless in my oppinion it would be a mistake to see the peculiarity of the models as an indicator of their final status.
The important fact, that the whole set of pictures processes the views into the interior of the close environment where the author lives and works, is a significant truth, which in the showing of the art works in the space of the gallery creates another possible interpretation or consideration level about the nature of the art works as well as the exhibition as a whole. We usually accept the gallery space free from traces of previous exhibitions, which creates a framework for migrant artistic personalities, with no objections. The interior of the gallery, that is temporarily occupied by the artist is also a space that, for limited time, turns the artist into a showpiece revealed to the public eye. The interior is seen as a zone of intimacy and home as an environment of spiritual and emotional qualities. In the case of Kamila Zemková the questions pointing to the nature of the situation of the exhibition might be important. With regard to the conscious dialogue with worlds of internal and external nature and her unusually personal approach, the situation can be understood as a reflection about the relationship of intimacy, which includes the ability of personal experience and imagination to its high public profile and shared features because of which we keep exposing ourselves to this kind of situation.