October 05, 2019 to October 30, 2019
Opening reception October 11, 2019, 6-8PM
Curator: Irina Protopopescu
Coordinator: Stefania Olbrycht
56 Bogart St
Brooklyn, NY 11206
In cooperation with Green Point Project
Slag Gallery is pleased to present The Edge showcasing recent paintings by the Polish artist Anna Szprynger. This will be Szprynger’s first exhibition with the gallery and the artist’s first solo show in the United States.
Szprynger’s resolutely abstract works on view establish a dialogue with the history of abstraction only to challenge some of its main premises. Using a dark color palette—which often verges on the monochrome—the artist assiduously fills each of her canvases with a multitude of thin lines to striking optical effects. The resulting surfaces, despite their inherent two-dimensionality, appear textural.
Challenging the dominant modernist narrative of pictorial flatness, Szprynger does not discard painterly illusionism, while her abstract compositions elicit haptic engagement and prompt the spectator to undertake the quixotic effort of uncovering what lies beneath. These fictive spaces which Szprynger creates—and which the viewer can but attempt to enter—are filled with paradoxes, appearing at once meditative and frustrating, organic and inanimate, fixed and elusive.
While Szprynger’s non-objective work forges its own idiosyncratic path, the artist’s multifaceted practice remains in a constant dialogue with its art historical past. Szprynger’s commitment to non-objectivity situates her painting in the long-standing tradition of Polish abstract painting—from Henryk Stażewski’s efforts to establish a new constructivist vocabulary during the interwar period to Wojciech Fangor’s attempts to thrust color into the three-dimensional space in the aftermath of 1956 cultural thaw. Moreover, the artist’s technique, characterized by a laborious process of line application, goes beyond the artistic tradition of her home country, finding a precedent in the oeuvre of the American abstract painter, Agnes Martin, whose grid-like structure Szprynger productively disrupts.