Marta Wakuła-Mac 'Feminine. Floral.'

opening: 23/06/2022
exhibition: 23/06/2022 – 15/07/2022

‘Feminine. Floral’. Hippy-sounding title intentionally juxtaposes two stereotypical terms. However, in the case of Marta Wakuła-Mac, it’s hard to talk about generalization, it’s hard to look for categorization and infantility. There is essentialism and a line, there is a color spot, there is a whole dose of folk lined with unspeakable ephemeralism.

For the Artist, workshop graphics definitely act as an alter ego, a Freudian id that flows from the depths of the soul, from the need to create – that is innate and undisguised, but tamed on paper.

In the era of abstraction, an escape from representational art, in an era when the seemingly topic of corporeality has been exploited, the works of Marta Wakuła-Mac have a lot to offer. They re-establish femininity, emphasize grace, purity and dignity, thus avoiding flat and trivial eroticization. They do not idealize or operate with schematic patterns. The artist consciously reaches deep into the history of art and draws the best out of it: the contour, a certain amount of cubicity, understatement, elusiveness. Thanks to the rich and vivid colors, it refers to the broadly understood folklore, and even to the ethnicity hidden in an individual iconographic type. The harmonious idyll of the colors of linocuts and monotypes was contrasted with the sharp monochromatism of dryorites and woodcuts. The echo of Die Brücke and German expressionism is clearly audible, elevated to the best form of primitivism. This is undoubtedly helped by the rejection of color, emphasis on form, abandonment of perspective and the lack of striving to present the correct proportions. Just like over a century ago, also in the artist’s case, deformation and color, devoid of a superficial mimicry void, are an image of emotions. Despite the rough shapes, Marta Wakuła-Mac’s nudes are extremely sophisticated, subtle, and at the same time ethereal and mysterious. They are complemented by nature, boldly entering the contours of the figure, crossing borders, individual and undisturbed, at times leading the way in  performances. The supremacy of the flower as a symbol is evident here. The artist boldly introduces vegetation not only as an allegory of femininity and innocence, but also emphasizes the truth embedded in the philosophy of feng shui, favoring the influx of soothing and salutary energy emanating, for example, from magnolia. The clash of the contour with an expressive color spot is a confrontation for the softness that can be seen in the drawings. However, this dynamics does not end on the spot – it continues in a jagged line, often punctual and broken, countering the subtlety and nostalgia of the theme.

There is no room for dull decorativeness in art understood in this way. There is, however, a whole space for bold contrasts, collision of essential simulacra while maintaining a fragile delicacy.

Karolina Wójcik, art curator

Marta Wakuła-Mac

Absolwentka Instytutu Sztuki, Akademii Pedagogicznej w Krakowie. Zajmuje się grafiką warsztatową. Członek ZPAP OK, SMTG oraz Graphic Studio Dublin 2006-2014. Prowadzi Pracownie graficzną w NCK w Krakowie.

2017 Wyróżnienie Honorowe, AKT, BWA Rzeszów, Polska; 2016 wyróżnienie Honorowe i medal, XVI Międzynarodowe Biennale Małych Form i Exlibrisu, Ostrów Wielkopolski, Polska; 2007 Arts Council Travel and Training Award; 2017 Culture Ireland grant.

Prace znajdują się m.in. w Graphic studio Gallery, Printmakers Gallery of Ireland, Dublin; Muzeum Archidiecezjalne, Poznań; Jan Fejkiel Gallery, Kraków; Civic Museum of Cremona, Włochy; AIB Bank TASCQ Dublin, OPW Dublin.

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