23.05.2018 - 04.08.2018
Fait Gallery, Ve Vaňkovce 2, Brno
opening: 23. 5. 2018 at 7 pm
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.
Fait Gallery PREVIEW
Dominican Square 10, Brno
7/5 – 20/6/2014
Opening: 6/5/2014 at 6pm
Guest: Martin Baar
Curator: Martin Mazanec
The shell of the machine controlled unfolding of the exhibition space with book with black pages. The exhibition The Source by Veronika Vlková and Jan Šrámek exists based on a series of cooperative exhibitions, which was an assembling of the painting, models and blending of their form and content. The cooperation, which brings gradual merging of individual styles is within individual exhibitions conditioned by the topic, that affects also the process and dynamics of the ativity.
The exhibitions It does not have to dawn on straight away (Školská Gallery, Prague 2012) and The Lost perspective (Chodovská fortress, Prague 2012) based the outer shell on the mythological story, which was part of the animated video and a particular publication. A couple of exhibitions The Magic of forgetfulness (Blansko Gallery, 2013) and You get what you can carry (Nau Gallery, Prague 2013) again based their skeleton on a mythical story of an air crash at the Crimea, where the main hero, hidden under his own story, was Joseph Beuys. While the first two exhibitions were based on a parable about a girl living in a post-apocalyptic landscape and a main format was animation and a book, the story that was loosely paraphrasing the confession an artist was a gallery illustration consisting of a mosaic of watercolors, computer illustrations, objects and animations covering a broad range of symbolic and cultural themes.
The recovery of the figures from watercolors and drawings, was in previous exhibitions done through their animation and editing, that was done in cooperation with Martin Búřil. The current exhibition on the other side is intended to work mostly with the reality of the time experienced whilst visiting the exhibition. The exhibition leads to thoughts about the momentum of pictures that are static, but also moving freely in the environment of their own previously undefined landscape.
Projections in the centre of the space is a constantly changing image that will never be the same. Therefore the gallery is metaphorically changed into a board game, which can be accessed from the pages of the black book, through the projection or the absurd motion of objects measuring the "gallery time." There is an inspiration to discover the experienced space, to it´s literal and even purely literary permeability based on the presence of the borders of the exhibition itself.
Words from a book, paintings on the wall and onomatopoeic robotics of mechanisms revive the contents of the exhibition, which is not defined in advance, but is "derived" through the archetypes of literary genres and symbols. The exhibition The Source with Martin Baar as a guest opens another topic for Veronika Vlková nd Jan Šrámek. For the first time this is not a joint exhibition in the meaning of combinations or sub-assembly of individual artistic works, but the process of joint exhibition articulation.