Julia Kowalska – I’m fading
October 10th 2017, 6 p.m.-9 p.m.
Data rozpoczęcia: 10.10.2017
Data zakończenia: 31.10.2017
We invite for the opening of first solo exhibition of Julia Kowalska titled "I'm fading". The vernissage will take place on October 10th 2017 at 6 p.m. - 9 p.m. in our headquarters at 51 Hoża Street in Warsaw. During the opening evening excellent wines will be served by Lutzville brand. Daniel Michał Szmidt, Cuisine Chic chef will take care of culinary experiences. Partners of the exhibition: Artinfo.pl, Wnętrza3D, Onebid.pl, Lutzville, Cuisine Chic.
Julia Kowalska (born 1998) in 2017 graduated from the Józef Brandt Comprehensive Secondary School of Fine Arts in Radom under a supervision of Aleksandra Dobrowolska, specializing in ceramic art. Currently she is studying Painting at the Academy of Fine Arts in Warsaw. Winner of numerous awards such as: Grand Prix in 7th National Art contest “Exlibris, antique element in the art of Jacek Malczewski” (2015); Award of the Director of the Department of Town-planning and Conservation in Zamość (2015); distinction in the contest “Variations on the art of Ignacy Witkiewicz” (2015); President of Radom Award in the field of personality for special artistic achievements (2015); 1st Award in National Art Contest “In the direction of fantasy and imagination”, dedicated to Zdzisław Beksiński (2016); 3rd Award in National Art Contest “Exlibris, Fables, Fairytales and Polish Legends” (2017). In 2016 she was included in the ranking of young Polish artists Young Art Compass on 51. place. She participated in solo exhibition of paintings and drawings organised in Music School in Radom and in many contest exhibitions: Body Figures (2014); Family Portrait (2013); Human Landscape (2012); Self-portrait Biennial and on group exhibition organised in European Parliament in Brussels by Deputy Office of Julia Pitera (2017).
Future is an open book
This isn’t even an exhibition. Rather a presentation. When I’m writing it I know that we’re going to present 6 paintings. Maybe there’ll be a surprise and the seventh one will appear, but it isn’t certain. It’s the first individual presentation of works by Julia Kowalska. The first exposition of a series of works, and not a single painting. All 6 of them are extremely exciting. And beautiful. This is such a timeworn word, which isn’t actually used any more to describe art. It’s considered not appropriate. I’m personally of a different opinion. Paintings by Julia Kowalska are beautiful. They are mature, interesting and intriguing as well.
I think, even if I’m weighing my words, that this description isn’t overestimated. We’re after all talking about a very young artist. Three months ago, Julia graduated from high school of fine arts and passed entrance examinations for the Academy of Fine Arts (ASP) in Warsaw. This is an important piece of information. Important today, as in two or three years it’ll be totally insignificant. Julia will soon become one of many ASP students, then graduates. One of many artists. Then only her art will matter. But for two years, collectors have been getting excited with the clearly recognisable style and unique atmosphere of Julia’s paintings, but it’s always done in the context of her age. Because she’s so young and she’s already creating such mature and carefully thought-out compositions.
When two years ago, I was asked to meet a 16 years old girl and review her portfolio, I did it only because it was a friend who asked. Artists usually send such materials by e-mail. Julia had a very well prepared portfolio. She was speaking in a modest, but self-confident way. She presented her expectations towards the art dealer and what she could offer herself. I was totally surprised. She was behaving as a mature artist. She was aware of the fact that at the time she didn’t have much to offer, but she appreciated the relationship. I have to admit that not many artists who are two decades older than her can act in this way. What’s more, she presented great paintings and sketches. There weren’t many of them. In some of them I noticed some anatomical mistakes or not really appropriate solutions. But I immediately realised that her personality is unique in every aspect.
Already the very first of Julia’s paintings which she could present to the public were difficult. They were not satisfying the tastes. I knew that they constituted the example of good painting, but I was afraid that collectors could not notice this “thing” which I did. I needn’t have worried. I was not disappointed by art lovers or by the auction market, about which so many artists complain. Julia’s works were quickly included in good collections and their prices were increasing quickly. Julia Kowalska is now on the 51st position of the Kompas Młodej Sztuki (Young Art Compass) ranking. For me personally, rankings do not represent a particularly important value, but for a young artist it’s a valuable distinction. What mattered more for me was the call from Julia right after the ranking was published. She asked whether there was one more artist called Julia Kowalska, as this distinction for sure wasn’t hers…
At the beginning, Julia was mainly painting herself. It’s the obvious choice of a young author. We’re patient models for ourselves. People from our immediate surroundings are also common nowadays, and interiors as well as the world around become the content of paintings. Nothing rebellious, no huge topics. Julia is telling about the world of a young woman. A little bit complicated, quartered by too many stimuli and impressions. But there are no problems which would be impossible to overcome. Her paintings are very intimate, but she looks at a human being in a way from which we know that this is what matters most for her. This is definitely humanistic painting. One could also wonder what differentiates her from other numerous young artists. Julia has established her own painting style, visible at first glance, but within these two years it’s possible to see that it’s evolving. The topic, limited colour range and narrow cadres remain constant. Nothing seems too loud here, nothing shocks, nothing wants to attract the attention by all means. This painting is classy.
What will happen with Julia Kowalska’s painting in a year, and what in three years’ time? Where will the artist find herself when she graduates? We don’t know it. Will she keep on painting? I hope so. However, her life may go into a totally different direction. Maybe it’ll go towards cold media, or maybe towards sculpture? She can do whatever she wants. But I know that her next works will be very interesting.