Filip Berendt & Igor Omulecki, Monomyth / Mikado
WE START WORK FROM A PLACE OF NOT KNOWING
Emerging collectives usually announce their objectives in sweeping manifestos, but we’d prefer to skip that. This doesn’t mean that we renounce objectives per se, or want to avoid sketching out the scope of our work; on the contrary, we acknowledge it as an aberration, but one stemming from the amalgamation of the areas of interest of two independent artists.
Our exhibition is essentially an attempt to juxtapose two individual projects and then interrogate the overlap. Both projects were created around the same time. The object was developed primarily through working with intuition, the human subconscious, and visual perception, yielding pieces wherein sculptural and painterly forms blend with photography. As artists, we see the creative process as a journey into the depths of the Structure of the Collective Mind.
In the Monomyth series, launched in 2015, I combine black-and-white photography with geometrised, colourful cuboids to create rich pieces portraying a personal and mythological journey. For this series, I once again resort to a process I used in my prior efforts, for which I photographed (and subsequently destroyed) spatial compositions compiled on the wall of my studio. The resulting images are rooted in sculpture, graphic design, and painting, with photography providing a fitting conclusion to the process. As the title suggests, this new series explores the monomyth, also known as the hero’s journey—an anthropological concept devised by Joseph Campbell, an American scholar of mythology and religion, writer, and thinker.
The objective of the project is to visualise a myth shared by all culture, while the work itself is supported by my original research into shamanism that I have conducted over a number of years across four separate continents. (Filip Berendt)
Mikado was inspired by spontaneous installations crafted by my 9-year-old son Ignacy and the innate engineering skills of beavers. Mikado reveals the internal process of engineering an image. By revealing the primaeval gesture, the tools become as important as the recorded reality. The real world becomes free to mould at the subatomic level. Mikado is a sculpture of the photographic space, fleshing out the shape and structure of the new form. The newly emerging language of the visual representation may encourage us to take a broader and more up-to-date view of reality as a multi-layered, fluid system, in which all models of understanding the world and physical systems coexist at the same time. Ultimately, our perception and consciousness draw out and generate that which is available to our perception and cognition at any given moment. (Igor Omulecki)
Filip Berendt (b. 1975 in Łódź) is a visual artist, a graduate of London’s Royal College of Art. Recipient of a fellowship from the Minister of Culture. Often blends photography with painting and sculpture, interrogating the purely formal and sensual qualities of the medium, attempting to communicate the physicality of photographed objects through interaction, performance, and sculptural installations, and transcending its inherently documentary nature. The unique creative process is a very important aspect of Berendt’s work. He creates custom-built objects for his photographs and arranges three-dimensional collages on the walls of his workshop, which he later photographs, and eventually destroys. Berendt’s work has been exhibited at Paris Photo, Photo London, and Les Rencontres d’Arles, as well as LISTE—Art Fair Basel, the Gulbenkian Galleries (RCA, London), and Galerie im Saalbau (Berlin), and featured in Foam Magazine and Lens Culture.
Igor Omulecki (b. 1973 in Łódź) is a visual artist, photographer, and educator. Recipient of fellowships from the Minister of Culture and the City of Warsaw. Awarded numerous prizes and honours, including the IPA Award, PMH, ExhibitA, Photolucida Critical Mass, Cannes Lions, and Europe’s Premier Creative Award. His highly diverse creative output has, in recent years, been focused primarily on visual perception and forms of visual representation. Omulecki’s oeuvre also includes hundreds of press credits and a number of exhibitions. His work has been exhibited in a variety of prestigious venues, including the Barbican in London, the Centre for Contemporary Art in Tel Aviv, the Matadero in Madrid, Zachęta–National Gallery of Art in Warsaw, and the Museum of Modern Art in Warsaw, while individual pieces have been added to the Jankilevitsch Collection, the collection held by the Zachęta in Szczecin, and many others.
Szara Kamienica Gallery
Rynek Główny 6