Standing Waters

As an accompanying event will on 22nd of June at 7.00 pm take place a performative intermedia installation Souvenir. It is produced in cooperation with the Platform 1-12 from Topoľčany.
The solo show of Mária Čorejová Standing Waters at Bratislava City Gallery presents a selection from her latest drawing series Days of Anger (2015-2016), Brave World (2016-2017), Standing Waters (2017) and Drawing Restraints (2017), together with the objects by architect Miriam Šebianová Sweet Home (2017). Mária continues to develop her authentic authorial programme prevalently in the technique ink on paper. On the white surface of the paper sheet the objects are assembled in such constellations of which one exclusive interpretation would put us in danger of getting stuck in the shallows.
Days of Anger, referring with its title to the classic of Slovak literature, consist of representations of both everyday objects and universal symbols of our cultural circle, for example bread or boat. Things which are burnt, burning, flowing, or are drowning in themselves, produce the instant feeling of worry about the change of their state and/or state of matter. Mária adapts her technique – this time very soft pencil drawing and scratched black wax – so that she reaches more dramatic contrast, feeling of loss of security after being hit by imaginary lightning of anger.
The newest Drawing Restraints, to which Miriam responds with Sweet Home, are at first sight thematically alike to Days of Anger. On the other hand, as the title suggests, Mária reflects on the possibilities and limits of the drawing media. She does not take into account only its preconditions as space demarcation – paper edges, or its fundamental flatness. At the same time she doubts if there is actually really something except nothing behind the picture. Metal construction of Miriam's objects shaped as houses delineates in the third dimension a certain physical and ideological space, in the similar way like Mária's drawing line. Borders of this space are interrupted with motifs from Mária's usual repertoire, for example balloon or animals, which are searching for their place in the framework of unclear borders between private and public space. Artists are inviting us to take a look at their relationship, its sweet ups and downs, its fragility similar to the sugar walls of one of the little houses.
Christian symbolism and church as religious archetype is emerging in Mária's œuvre regularly, last time in the series Stations of Crisis. In the newer Brave World the artist directs our gaze into the interior of sacral architecture: to the naves, transepts and chapels of the cloisters and cathedrals from Middle Ages. These are without doubt the most monumental material and artistic manifestations of the Christian tradition in Europe. She brings various strange objects and phenomena to these spaces and therefore disturbs the genre impression of the drawings. Indeed, these depictions of church interiors denote more metaphysical than physical space, but deprived of its divine aura represented by the light coming through the colourful glass windows. In these mute skeletons are the fragments of the secular world trapped in the iconic black matter/fluid. The artist shifts the discussion to the framework of thinking about systems (religious, social, cultural), about their borders, confrontations and overlaps. According to legends, at the beginning of the world there was light. And at the beginning of the art/painting there was a line drawn alongside the shadow.
The series Standing Waters (California Dreaming) is an outcome of Mária's this-year microresidency in California, US. Right on spot, in plein-air of the West Coast of America, Mária recorded lonely moments of the group of artists by the means of extremely reduced drawing. It is in no way depiction of impression, neither of shades of feelings. She literally inscribed the static character of the certain moment almost out of time, making visible another here and now beyond the hurry of everyday life.
Souvenir is a new form of study, research and presentation of interdisciplinary work of art, which is not taking itself too seriously. Souvenir is something that a person brings from somewhere or is being given by somebody else. The chosen artists, who are representing various fields of art (visual art, literature, architecture, dance, sound art, multimedia), have met, worked and collected their souvenirs from various places in Slovakia. Alongside the reflection on the chosen places they were given a chance to appropriate something from the discipline of other artists or a manner how to present themselves to the audience. The aim was to work as a unified group ego in the collective balance of the media. Participating artists got a possibility to confront themselves and their work in the dialogue with other forms of art. The group produced improvised work of art around staged elements of solid construction. Participating artists: for architecture Eva Andrášová, for drawing Mária Čorejová, for dance and choreography Tomáš Danielis, for art-arrangement Zuzana Novotová-Godálová, for literature Zuzana Husárová, for music Ľubomír Panák, for multimedia Jakub Pišek (Zuzana Novotová-Godálová, translated by Miroslava Urbanová).
Miroslava Urbanová
Mgr. art. Mária Čorejová (*1975) graduated from Academy of Fine Arts and Design in Bratislava (prof Daniel Fischer, 1994-2000). She obtained Fulbright Scholarship at Art Institute of Boston in the US (2002). She participated in several residencies, such as Strabag Kunstforum Wien (2015 and 2010), CIANT Praha (2010) or Marcel Hicter Foundation Brusel (2004). She was a finalist of Strabag Artaward International (2010). Group exhibitions (selected): 2017 REGULAR LINE, Topoľčany–San Francisco;, The Laundry, San Francisco, USA; 2016 OSAMELÍ, Bratislava City Gallery; 2015 Pamäť–Prelud–Predstava, Galerie Kritiků, Prague; FIGUR/STRUCTUR (Strabag Kunstforum collection), RLB Kunstbrucke, Innsbruck; 2014 FEM(INIST) FATALE, KHB Bratislava; 2012 KRV, Slovenská národná galéria, Bratislava. Solo exhibitions (selected): 2016 LIQUID BORDERS, Loft8 Galerie, Vienna; 2015 Zasľúbená zem, Galéria Schemnitz; 2015 STROM ŽIVOTA, Galéria Čin čin, Bratislava; 2014 MÁRIA ČOREJOVÁ (REGULAR LINE #2), Gallery Blocprojects, Sheffield, UK; 2014 Krízová cesta, Prezidentský salónik, Hlavná stanica, Bratislava; 2014 Identity/ľahkosť hľadania, Nitrianska galéria (s A. Adamíkovou); 2014 Rozhovory, ktoré vedú inam, Dom umenia/KHB, Bratislava; 2013 DRAWINGS…AND CONTENTS, Kubik Gallery, Porto; 2013 Rozhovory, ktoré vedú inam, Stredoslovenská galéria Banská Bystrica; 2012 EO INSTANTO, Galéria 19, Bratislava; 2011 MIND GAMES, Kasárne-Kulturpark, Košice, Stanica Žilina-Záriečie, Galéria SPACE, Bratislava a iné. Mária works also as graphic designer and book illustrator.
Ing. arch. Miriam Šebianová (*1972) graduated from the Department of Architecture at Slovak Technical University in Bratislava. She is a freelance architect. She participated in the design of several buildings in Slovakia or abroad. Besides architecture she creates art objects (she collaborated with M. Čorejová more times) and she also works as illustrator (Silvia Plath: Čarovný oblek Maxa Nixa, publishing house f.a.c.e., 2016).
Miroslava Urbanová (*1991) studies art history at University of Vienna. She finished her bachelor degree at Comenius University in Bratislava. She works as freelance curator, curator and assistant at the gallery Loft8 in Vienna, external lecturer at Slovak National Gallery and Danubiana. She is a member of the art collective Frustracija.
The production of artworks for this exhibition was supported from the public resources by Slovak Arts Council.
The exhibition was supported by grant programme Ars bratislavensis 2017.