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- Author Lidia Krawczyk, Wojciech Kubiak
- Date of production 2007
- Dimensions height: 195 cm, width: 195 cm
- Author's designation none
- ID no. BS/951
- Availability in stock
- Acquired date 2008
- Object copyright Bunkier Sztuki Gallery of Contemporary Art
- Digital images copyright © all rights reserved, Bunkier Sztuki Gallery of Contemporary Art
- Digitalisation RDW MIC, Virtual Małopolska project
The project Genderqueer was implemented by Lidia Krawczyk and Wojciech Kubiak in the period 2006–2008. The first comprehensive presentation of a series of paintings, photographs, films, and sculptures was the exhibition, Becoming, in Bunkier Sztuki Gallery (2008), which, at the same time, was the crowning touch for all the activities related to it. The themes of the exhibition focused on the topic of the constant need to declare one’s identity and sexuality. The subject of interest to the artists was an attempt to show the ambiguity of the relations formed between what is feminine and masculine. People who expressed their willingness to share their experiences, related to expressing their own gender identity that deviates from socially expected conventions and the traditional division of gender roles, have become the protagonists of images and photography.more
The project Genderqueer was implemented by Lidia Krawczyk and Wojciech Kubiak in the period 2006–2008. The first comprehensive presentation of a series of paintings, photographs, films, and sculptures was the exhibition, Becoming, in Bunkier Sztuki Gallery (2008), which, at the same time, was the crowning touch for all the activities related to it. The themes of the exhibition focused on the topic of the constant need to declare one’s identity and sexuality. The subject of interest to the artists was an attempt to show the ambiguity of the relations formed between what is feminine and masculine. People who expressed their willingness to share their experiences, related to expressing their own gender identity that deviates from socially expected conventions and the traditional division of gender roles, have become the protagonists of images and photography.
The titular genderqueer — created from the combination of two terms belonging to the academic discourse—defines a new identity, detached from the traditional division into woman and man. It is a concept which is focused on the personal definition of who you want to be. Genderqueers identify themselves biologically and genderwise as simultaneously women and men or transgress these predefined boundaries. This identity self-determination is based on the conviction that there are as many sexes as there are people. Commenting on the project, the artists explained: “The word »genderqueer« refers to a problem related to the identity of man, both cultural and sexual [...]. Its use in this project by us refers to an attempt to discuss ways of building a »human being«, creating their personality and identity, thus creating an individual in society, and — in the words of Michel Foucault — taming that person. Gender is a cultural identity; therefore, norms and behaviours that are learned and whose basis is »naturalized« are treated as natural for a given gender. Queer is a discursive space, where processes are aimed at the deconstruction of heteronormativity.” Large-format paintings and photographs, which are part of the project Genderqueer, to which M. from the Gallery’s collection also belongs, most often depict characters in a portrait (frontal or three-quarters) approach, presented in a realistic, though not entirely unambiguous way: the appearance of each person bears signs of being both feminine and masculine. The elements gliding between femininity and masculinity — facial features, clothes, accessories — make it possible to revise the existing patterns and the clarity of the border between individual sexes. They pose a question about the possibility of cleansing the perception of schematic overlays and accepting the image as it is, without the need to make decisive resolutions.
The problem of transgression was also suggested by the traditional oil technique, with all its historical background in the field of portraits, which, in this case, was applied to the pictorial problematization of obscure aspects of identity. Each of the hyper-realistic paintings is based on previously made models, which — published on the internet as a kind of sketchbook for artists — allowed them to decipher the gender of the heroes. This gesture enabled the creators to ask a question about the purpose of dressing up — donning a mask by the persons depicted — and, at the same time, inclined to self-reflection over the attitude to transparency and secrecy of the issues raised.
Elaborated by Gabriela Brdej, Bunkier Sztuki Gallery of Contemporary Art,
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 Poland License.
Lidia Krawczyk and Wojciech Kubiak started their joint artistic activity in 2004. Their works, created as a duo, include paintings, photographs, videos, and installations. The artists are interested in social and cultural topics. They focus primarily on the issues of gender, sexuality, identity, social power structures, and hegemony. They attempt to overcome cultural stereotypes in the perception of man, to transgress sex and sexuality definitions. Their initial projects related to the cultural constructions of woman and man. Over time, the artists extended the range of issues, adding the indefinable, so-called “third sex”. Gender issues and constant deconstruction and analysis of social and cultural behaviours are determinants of their creative interests. The artists mark their presence not only in the field of art, but also in the sphere of social actions, such as the Culture for Tolerance (Kultura dla Tolerancji) festival. In 2006, they received an honorary distinction of the 4th Biennale of Young Art “Rybie Oko” at the Baltic Gallery of Contemporary Art in Słupsk. They are laureates of the Grand Prix at the 38th Biennale of Painting Bielska Jesień (2007). They participated in artistic residence under art-in-residence in Piešťany, Slovakia (2007) and Ville de Montrouge in France (2008). They are the creators of projects: Genderqueer (2006–2008), Host (2007) Institutions (2007–2008), Déjà vu (2008) and Disorders (2009–2010). They are the authors of individual exhibitions, including: Reliable (NOVA Gallery, Kraków, 2005), Passive. Family Ties (Art Agenda Novia, Kraków, 2006, Baltic Gallery of Contemporary Art, Słupsk, 2007), Erasing (Galeria Krytyków Pokaz, Warsaw, 2007), Genderqueer Revolution (UFA, Warsaw, 2008), Becoming (Bunkier Sztuki Gallery of Contemporary Art, Kraków, 2008), JungePolnisheKunst (Bestregarts, Frankfurt am Main, 2009–2010), Genderqueer (Platan Gallery, Budapest, 2011). They have participated in many collective exhibitions, including: Form is Emptiness – Emptiness is Form (Fundacja Wschód Sztuki, Fabryka Schindlera, Kraków, Galeria Sektor I, Katowice, 2006), Witch Ple-ple. Postmodernist travesty of what-is-feminine (Galeria DLA, Toruń, Klima Bocheńska Gallery, Warsaw, 2006), Re (co) nnaissance of painting (GCK, Katowice, Baltic Gallery of Contemporary Art, Słupsk, 2007), Art. Summer Show (Bestregarts, Frankfurt am Main, 2007), Bunkier Sztuki Collection (Galeria Stary Browar, Poznań, 2007), 50 years of Galeria Bielska BWA (Bureau for Art Exhibitions, Bielsko Biała, 2010), Sommerreise-Winterreise (Bestregarts, Frankfurt am Main, 2010).
Lidia Krawczyk (born 1979) is an artist, media expert, curator, and art critic. She is a graduate of the Institute of Audiovisual Arts (2004) and Postgraduate Gender Studies (2004) at the Jagiellonian University. She was the co-author of the online uniGENDER academic journal. She has published in “Ha!art”, “-Grafii”, “Panoptikum”, and has also collaborated also with the Gazeta Wyborcza newspaper. She has been the curator of numerous exhibitions and projects at the Bunkier Sztuki Gallery of Contemporary Art, including Joanna Pawlik’s exhibition Balance (2010), Bogusław Bachorczyk’s Kiss me in the ring (2011, together with Beata Nowacka-Kardzis), the project Dimensions of utopia (2011–2012), along with exhibitions of Laura Pawela, There will not be a hole in heaven, even if you go backwards (2011), Nicolas Grospierre, A city that does not exist (2011), Mariusz Libla, Higher good (2012), and Maciek Kurak, Already! (2012), the international project Private nationalism, and the exhibition Kalashnikov (2014, together with Anna Lebensztejn), and a collective exhibition, Minimal forms of reality (2015). She is the co-curator of the exhibitions: All mounds can be seen from my window (2016), and Prabhakar Pachpute and Rupali Patil. Harbingers of chaos (2017). She has also collaborated with many artists, who are invited to create works for Bunkier Sztuki collection, including: Honza Zamojski, Basia Bańda, Aleksandra Waliszewska, Urszula Tarasiewicz, Konrad Smoleński, Jaśmina Wójcik, Anna Molska and Maria Loboda. She lives and works in Kopanka.
Wojciech Kubiak (born 1978) is a painter, animator, and curator. He is a graduate of the Faculty of Painting and Pedagogical Studies at the Academy of Fine Arts in Kraków (since 2004, he has been an assistant professor at his alma mater, where he received his habilitation in 2016). He is the winner of the Grand Prix in the second edition of the Marian Michalik Triennial Young Painters’ Competition in Częstochowa (2004), a laureate of the Scholarship of the Minister of Culture (1999, 2003/2004), has a scholarship of the Mayor of Kraków (2005), a Grazelli Scholarship (2007), and a Young Poland Scholarship (2008). He has created many individual and group exhibitions, including: Fancy Success (Karlin Hall, 4th Prague Biennale, Prague, 2009), Monstrare (Collectiva Gallery, Berlin, 2010), Ars Homo Erotica (National Museum, Warsaw, 2010), Self-timer (together with Zbysław Marek Maciejewski, ASP Gallery, Kraków, 2012). He lives and works in Kraków.