Andrzej Banachowicz review

Andrzej Banachowicz

Ms. Bogusława Bortnik-Morajda has long based her artistic self-realization on a fascination with man and his surroundings. Man with his psyche, experiences and diverse nature. And this is, indeed, a melting pot of life. Onto this immense wealth of energy, passion and mystery, she projects her personal experiences. In this she is also inspired by her travels. e.g. to Egypt and Venice, where she absorbs cultural differences and the human being in a different space, which subsequently influences her painting. The artist seeks not only to depict the human condition with greater awareness, but also to make an appeal for a better, brighter everyday life. She tries to introduce herself and the spectator into the hidden space of the painting through light, bodily gesture and colour. This space keeps changing in her painting series, since sometimes it is the geometry of the interior that matters; at other times, it’s the elements of the landscape. Colours also change, the palettes narrow down and the forms become more or less real. Throughout her artistic practice, however, Ms. Bortnik-Morajda has disciplined her painterly temperament to represent the real world as accurately as possible. A temperament that gives her the satisfaction of journeying into life because it maintains her sense of the unpredictability of events. A temperament that allows her to be an interpreter of her paintings, but also the narrator of scenes or stories. This is evident in the titles of her works, such as Małżeństwo – M.G. (Marriage – M.G.), ‘Kama z Aniołem’ (Kama and the Angel), Axa, Kama from the series ‘Moje psy’ (My Dogs), A.B., C.D., M.G., F.G. from the series ‘Dwoje’ (The Two of Them), Rodzina P. (The P. Family), L.E., A from the series Kobieta (Woman), Matka i córka (Mother and Daughter), B.B. from the series ‘Portrety’ (Portraits), Gracje (Wdzięk, Radość, Piękność) (The Graces (Charm, Joy, Beauty)), Erytrocyty (Erythrocytes), namely the paintings that make up her post-doctoral qualification project. They are pictures from the last ten years, painted by the artist after the completion of her doctoral degree. What these works have in common is the sense that they carry scraps of our temporal existence into a transcendent eternity. Ms. Bortnik-Morajda includes reflection, the joy and the drama of existence in them. […] The people and animals in her paintings seem to be saying that while their physique is sometimes calm and gentle, at other times dramatic and painfully conveyed, it is also always acutely obvious. Obvious only to them, though; to us it is mysterious, intriguing and absorbing. The artist protects the spirituality of man, of her loved ones, husband, beloved dogs, neighbours and friends to give them all of her tenderness and support them with her optimism. Looking at her works, we can sense another life. Perhaps by continuing to analyze material beings, she manages to get (us) closer to the elusive being of truth?

Bogusława Bortnik – Morajda records the elusive mystery inherent in every ‘model’ in every painting. All of her work is consistent in the way it records marks or gestures and results from dialogue and thoughts about the ‘model’. One can see the desire to paint, the joy in using colour, and artistic sensitivity; the composition reveals a good, occasionally very good, sense of pictorial space. The moments caught in the frame keep us in a state where there is no closure to the past or no opening up of the future. But in every painting the artist stops time to liberate us from the pattern of opening and closing. It allows us, every now and then, to grasp the whole, to find meaning in the acceptance of a temporary state of affairs. It’s a kind of treatise on the joys of communication. Unsurprisingly so, since the painterly reality of Ms. Bortnik-Morajda is very personal – concerned with her life and experiences. That’s what makes her painting so consistent and suggestive. This world of the artist is close to me, because I would often like to enter it, because it seems intimate and friendly, as though – after all – it accustomed me to the inevitable.

The optimistic thing about this art is that it does not force you to hurry and worry… It is more of an encouragement to share the joyful message that the soul will be united with the ‘eternal stone’. The moods in her paintings are saturated with sensitivity to existence, they are poised between whisper and scream, and the intensity of colours reveals the life pulsating in them. This work is an oil and acrylic gestural script, which one can interpret for oneself and identify the carriers of authorial meaning. The carriers that, on the one hand, are of dramatic origin, but their ‘attractive’ painterly presentation camouflages these inner moods and tensions. That’s what makes them pictorially and situationally intriguing, and the viewer ‘follows’ the mystery of their message. These paintings are characterized by refined aesthetics and clearly refer to or draw on modernist art, namely Impressionism, Cubism and sometimes abstraction. There is something ‘beyond’ in these pictures, a splendour of ordinariness, as it were, something outside the frame. They allow us – me – to breathe calmly here because I know that ‘out there’ is the world of information overflow and often chaos. These oil and acrylic, intimate areas of the artist’s paintings protect us from the turmoil of civilization because they are an affirmation of the ‘richness’ of an individual or two people close to each other. An affirmation of moods, hopes, greetings, farewells, fears, joys and silence conducive to being together or feeling happy for small reasons. This work is a deeply humanistic statement of the universal character of experiences condensed in our imagination. It is this sphere of spirituality and the high quality of painterly experiments that I regard as proof that Bogusława Bortnik-Morajda’s postdoctoral dissertation ‘Ukryta przestrzeń’ (The Hidden Space) is a contribution to the development of the discipline.

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