Tatjana Pieters is pleased to invite you to The beating heart by Swedish painter Jim Thorell and Rags on Buildings by Polish sculptor Przemek Pyszczek. Both artists present new paintings & sculptures with their first solo exhibitions in Belgium. Although titled as 2 separate shows that relate to the current theme of their work, the presentation was set up as a dialogue to underscore the artists’ correlating interest in European nostalgia. Departing from a personal observation of European tradition, they fuse their experience in the culture they grew up in with canons in German, Scandinavian but also Belgian painting in the case of Thorell & post-communist architecture in the case of Pyszczek.

Przemek Pyszczek has been living and working in Berlin since 2010, and has recently moved to Drzeniów, a small village in Poland. His sculptures, paintings and installations deal thematically and formally with Polish architecture in the post-communist era.

Following his family’s emigration from Poland to Canada during his childhood and his later studies in the field of architecture in Winnipeg, Pyszczek laid the focus of his recent artistic work on the phenomenon of mass-produced residential blocks, in particular on the embellishment of their façades and building structures, which also extend into the surrounding environment.

He began photographing housing estate facades, which, since the fall of the iron curtain have been painted as if to resemble a multi-colored boat or a giant butterfly. As Pyszczek explains, “After the fall of communism, they started refurbishing these buildings because of heat loss issues, insulating and stuccoing the facades, and painting these crazy graphics all over them.”

His interest in the deconstruction of these systems is rooted in a formal analysis that is overlaid with autobiographical aspects. The artist makes references to colours, forms, specific visual features, ornaments, graphic structures and material situations, which he recombines, condenses and overlaps to create new relationships and contexts.

Rags on Buildings refers to new works made especially for the show. They are various elements of an abstracted landscape and look at different aspects and layers of building facades. The forms, colours, patterns, textures, materials, and processes refer to an intervention into a post-Communist urban environment. Pyszczek comments: The works look at different aspects and layers of building facades. Prefabricated buildings are covered in styrofoam and stucco to increase their insulation value. (the white block sculptures). The meshes are used to cover buildings for advertising - in this case I have printed the meshes with the graphics that are applied to buildings normally with paint. The grid of small green paintings also refer to this process of facade ornamentation with the graphic and colour elements. They also make use of styrofoam that is applied to the surface of buildings, while also making reference to communist-era facade reliefs found in architecture of the time. The small metal sculptures are comprised of different elements from playground structures, creating another element in an abstracted, fractured landscape/mindscape.

Przemek Pyszczek (PL, 1985) lives and works in Berlin (DE) and Poland. Recent solo exhibitions include Untitled at High Gallery, Poznan (PL), Przemek Pyszczek at Galerie Derouillon, Paris (FR), 1989 at Belenius, Stockholm (SE) and Sandomir at Nicodim Gallery, Los Angeles (US). In 2018 he will have solo exhbitions at ICA, Winnipeg (CA) and Leto Gallery, Warsaw. He is represented by Nicodim in LA & Derouillon in Paris.