Bratislava City Gallery ­– Allowance organisation of the City of Bratislava, capital of the Slovak Republic

Digitus medius  | Galéria mesta Bratislavy | Allowance organisation of the City of Bratislava, capital of the Slovak Republic


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Mirbach Palace, one of the Gallery´s buildings, dates back to 1768.



Digitus medius

Author: Igor Ondruš
Mirbach Palace (show Contact)
24. 1. 2012 - 26. 2. 2012
Curator: Ivan Jančár

Igor  Ondruš captures the world as he sees it and comments on it in his own way, telling us about what he has experienced and experiencing. He does it a way that is new in Slovakia – raw, natural and most of all, unique – which is (relatively surprisingly) up to a certain extent accepted here.
While in the art Academy, his teacher Vladimír Popovič encouraged him to focus on his own experiences more than on social or political issues. Igor Ondruš only partially followed this recommendation. Despite the fact that his own experiences dominate his work, he has dealt with other topics as well.
His own experiences and relationships are also topics of the series O dievčatách / About girls and some other paintings. Prvé poschodie vľavo hore / First floor on the left (2006) portrays a high school (gymnasium) corridor with typical green walls, and he and his girlfriend Jana arethere, intimate. Panenka Jana / Virgin Jana (2011), shows Jana as an ethereal, adorable object in the painting where he prays to his goddess. The memory of her is also present in the painting Jana (2011), in which the strangely bent torso of a girl with some remains of her dress has a nearly fetishistic significance for this artist. Eva-nie (2006) is a painting of his friend Eva showing his dissatisfaction with her wasted talent and her life
Igor Ondruš is often inspired by beautiful women from various magazines or iconic models or actresses, world of comics and tabloids, where one doesn’t need to know or feel too much to get famous. While we can say that he is almost cruel in the self-irony in the paintings about his relationships, the superficial outside world invites sarcasm. This is evident in a painting like Hviezda večera / Star of the evening (2011), with Jessica Simpson standing and showing off with slightly disdainful face. Motive of Pannalosangelská / Los Angeles Virgin (2011) is the most famous photo  of Pamela Anderson with lit Los Angeles in the background, seen as a symbol of „the most beautiful, the best and most desirable“ object. In Terapia / Therapy (2006), model Andrea Verešová is painted as a nurse in mental hospital, walking with men that need treatment.
Many of his paintings are filled with erotic motives, edgy erotic relationships between a man and a woman and mostly unfulfilled expectations. An oval image Podvedomé otázky / Subconscious questions (2011) captures the first meeting between a man and a woman, where the artist refers to the statement of psychologists  about first unconscious thoughts when any man and woman meet. They believe that a man wonders about a woman’s age, while she is thinking instead about how much he earns. There is a woman on the beach in the center of painting called, s.r.o.(2011), visibly bothered by men. The motif of a pig running towards the group indicates the happiness of the situation, a snake is there as a phallic symbol and instead of birds, there are penises flying in the air.
Igor Ondruš also deals with political and social themes, often with characteristic irony. Here relates paintings as Európska... / Europea (2011), Oslobodenie Bratislavy / Liberation of Bratislava(2011) or Krajina idiotov / Country of idiots (2011).
Author uses various painting techniques, from a deliberately naive style (Inteligent / Intelligent, Reč tela / The body language, Vitajte/ Welcome and others), through realistic landscapes painted in the 19th- century style (such as Bezdomovci / Homeless people,X+Y), to hyper-realistic expression (Také normálne detičky / Such regular kids, Skupinka / Small group, Krajina neobmedzenýchmožností / Country with infinite possibilities, Vrchol hospodárskejrecesie / Peak of the economic recession, Kamošky / Girlfriends,Vitaj v ďžungli / Welcome to the jungle, Panna losangelská / LosAngeles virgin...). However, he is also fascinated by ancient Pompeian paintings (painting Horror vacui). Sporadically,there are collages in his work, such as Aj lov jú or Poďte k ockovi / Come to Daddy.


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Igor Ondruš

Other exhibitions/actions

Pálffy Palace / Exhibition
Curator: Vladimír Kordoš, Marián Meško
21. 4. 2020 - 30. 8. 2020
Mirbach Palace / Exhibition
Author: Albín Brunovský
Curator: Ivan Jančár
12. 3. 2020 - 30. 8. 2020

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Pohľad z hradu Starhemberg
Author: Moritz Saint Genois
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