Pia Krajewski

Untitled (Mohn Schatten), 2019

Oil on Canvas

150 × 100 cm


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Artwork
Description

Untitled (Mohn Schatten – Poppy Shadow) marks a new direction in Pia Krajewski’s exploration of the tactile world: the shadow. Similar to a visualisation of our own sense of sight, shadows are at once intangible and enveloping. With their flexible shapes still linked to a physical body, they can caress without ever touching. These patches of darkness can seep like liquid in all the nooks and crannies, gently adapting their shape wherever they land. The highly synesthetic practice of Pia Krajewski seems to take metaphor one step further: shadow and fabric linguistically blend in our imagination, as they are both enveloping and shrouding.

Although she always depicts real life objects (plants, tools, furniture, seeds…), it is clear that Krajewski’s objective is not that of portraying life as it is, but rather of using it as a springboard for another kind of exploration, that which our gaze performs on objects, constantly anticipating pleasure, abjection, or pain, even before our hands move towards the considered surface.

Tapping the viewer’s mind in a way not dissimilar to ASMR (autonomous sensory meridian response) triggers, the paintings of Pia Krajewski induce in the viewer a sense of calm and encourage them to slow down and look at these surfaces for longer: at first, we try to decode the visual content, but finally we surrender to a vocabulary that while familiar, remains mysterious.

About
the artist

Pia Krajewski was born in 1990 in Cologne, Germany. She spent seven years at the Kunstakademie Düsseldorf studying painting under Dietmar Lutz and Andreas Schulze. Selected shows include 72. Internationale Bergische Kunstausstellung at the Kunstmuseum Solingen and a clue at the bookstore Walther Koenig at Kunsthalle Düsseldorf. In 2018 Krajewski was the Winsor & Newton Artist-in-Residence at the Künstlerhaus Bethanien, Berlin.

Krajewski’s paintings are characterised by a certain poetic representation of objects. Lemons, arms, tables and vases are carefully selected and depicted throughout her work. The objects’ appearances are clear, but removed from their everyday environments their meaning is annoyingly elusive and puzzling. Krajewski creates a world where coherent narrative is lacking, however physicality is never in doubt. Her imagery is formally meaningful where it is intellectually frustrating: the painted objects are given a uniformity by their presence on the same picture plane.

The logic of Pia Krajewski’s paintings is the logic of vision made bare. She shows the viewer a kind of parallel world, a world comprised solely of sight: a world which promises the knowledge of what it really is to see. In the absence of any cerebral cues, the viewer is moved to this understanding physically rather than intellectually, attaining a position of distance that allows revelations and associations to rise to the fore.

The images Pia Krajewski creates are sensible: just look at the hands and arms that reach under tables, point towards picture frames. In a move that recalls medieval theories of vision, sight is represented as a finger pressing a vase: one thinks of Giotto’s figure of Circumspection in the Arena Chapel, her eyes protruding tentacles, testifying to the physicality of seeing.

The artist sensitively guides our perception; her paintings are as pleasurable as they are gentle, reaching out to press softly on our eyes.


The logic of Pia Krajewski’s paintings is the logic of vision made bare. She shows the viewer a kind of parallel world, a world comprised solely of sight: a world which promises the knowledge of what it really is to see.


Pia Krajewski
on Artuner

Part of the
exhibition

April 11th, 2019 until
May 5th, 2019
Curated by Jurriaan Benschop