Agnieszka Handzel and Paweł Kordaczka
27 November – 15 December 2019
The artistic tandem of two people, Agnieszka Handzel and Paweł Kordaczka, had its beginnings in their love of painting. They share their roots too, since they both were born in the borderlands of South-eastern Poland. That’s where they went to school and that’s where they first experienced art at Fine Art Lycée. They say, that they learnt to ‘breathe art’ there.
Further art education was completed at the Art Institute, part of the Silesian University both finishing with MA, in 2001. In the same year, they were both recipients of the German Paderborn Volksbank Young European Artists Award. They moved to London and found their place in Willesden Green, not far from the Library. As members of APA (the Association of Polish Artists in Great Britain) and ‘Page 6’ small artists’ group, they exhibit regularly in Europe and the UK.
Paweł Kordaczka (1974) doesn’t like to talk about his inspirations, or explain his art: he thinks that paintings should ‘talk’ to the viewer in their own language, allowing for personal interpretation. A large part of his works bear no titles, they are ‘Untitled’. In his words: “Maybe despite of that, or maybe because of that, after few moments of contemplation, the viewer starts to have his own, sub-conscious associations, personal and different to everybody else”.
The geometric compositions of his canvases draw you inside. Oscillating on the border of abstraction, they invite you in, until you give them your own title, or write your own, personal story conjured up by the image you see. At the same time, the abstract soul of the paintings is clearly visible through the shapes, the flat colour surfaces, the transparent glazes, to satisfy even the most discerning lover of abstraction.
Agnieszka Handzel (1976) says she paints with emotions while the paintbrush is only a tool. Some-times the tool is accidental; a rusty nail, a shell found on the beach, an old dried up twig. Her paintings are lyrical but bold, sad and humorous at the same time. They are flirting with the viewer, sometimes hiding a deeper erotic meaning behind the mask of the innocent comical faces of her elongated figures. She loves poetry, the poetry of everyday reality, but rejects the convenances and masks we hide behind, and instead asks the viewer to laugh with her at the naked truth of life.
In her paintings the viewer is often confronted with a figure of a woman caught with a certain gesture, a smile, or a glance. Sometimes there is a prop: an old bath tub, chair, or a cat. Sometimes an-other figure comes into the picture, mostly a man often naked, comically serious and a story is born. There is a narrative that gets under our skin when we look at her paintings, as we recognise our-selves in them, the situations, and the silent dialogues that occur between a man and a woman, the erotic ambiguities, the unsaid, the imagined, the never-happened.