The artist (b. 1983) – a graduate of the Department of Graphic Arts of the Eugeniusz Geppert Academy of Fine Arts and Design in Wrocław, and since 2009 its employee – studied under Andrzej Basaj and Eugeniusz Get-Stankiewicz. A painter and above all a drawer, he is not afraid to use his fingertips to spread charcoal directly onto a corrugated sheet of Fabriano paper.
By avoiding tools such as art sticks or holders, his practice becomes enriched with the sense of touch. Feeling the sheet and modulating its surface by hand resembles a sculptor’s habit of checking the texture of stone, the warmth of wood or the density of clay. The artist is guided by intuition, effortlessly removes the unwanted traces or imperfections, leaving solely the jet-black pigment. Thanks to subtlety, precision and finesse Grulkowski has achieved technical mastery. His preferred formula of depiction only adds to the illusionary character of his works.
The upcoming exhibition of works by this virtuoso of drawing (winner of the President’s Prize at the Biennial of Drawing in Pilsen (2008), holder of multiple scholarships from the Minister of Culture and National Heritage and the Municipality of Wrocław, whose presentation was enthusiastically received at the Academy of Fine Arts in Beijing) comprises selected pieces belonging to the series Finding the Order of Things and Sections of Cloud Interiors. By imitating smooth materials and sensual textures, the artist explored in them the surfaces of ordinary things, the morphology of mysterious substances and rather unspecified tissues.
His most recent cycle, bearing the intriguing title The Secret Life of Molecules (2015–2017), focuses on an unusual field. Arranged linearly in binary or ternary systems, rows of points, dots, drops or spots trigger associations with a code, the Braille alphabet or perforated cards. In a way, they pertain to Mystery, to that which is indeterminable and surprising, and yet characterised by melancholic beauty.