DIAMOND – installation
MA in the discipline of Fine Arts, Faculty of Graphic Arts, Academy of Fine Arts in Warsaw, Poland, 2004
Promoter: prof. Rafał Strent
Big thanks to prof. Teresa Memches and Agnieszka Szymańska.
diamond comes from the dance of The Sleeping Beauty ballet. It is the point of reference for the entire project. Agnieszka Szymańska, a young dancer from the Roman Turczynowicz Ballet School in Warsaw was my inspiration. diamond consists of graphics (drypoint technique) on transparent silk, representing a life-size dancing figure. Many transparent, airy prints suspended in space create the illusion of dancing. The viewer is surrounded by a multidimensional graphic and human forms create a constantly changing image.
I received the permission to silently participate in the last class at a ballet school to observe the rehearsals and trainings. It has been an unforgettable experience. I was amused with the atmosphere there while I was trying to keep up with the figure and capabilities of the young ballerinas. At first, I felt like an intruder in the room, a voyeur craving to see something forbidden. I was sitting in the corner and observing. I almost could not move but at the same I did not want to. I was watching them for hours. I immersed myself into that reality, the actuality that pulled the dancers down; who through hard work tried to leave the earth just for a while. It was amazing. I was impressed by their determination and their constant struggle. The visible exhaustion of those fragile beings, their labored breathing, repetition of the same sequence limited only by their pain thresholds, exhaustion and dejection, and that rare glint of joy when something finally turned the way it should. They were fighting with themselves, not only with their bodies but also with their psyche and thoughts. I noticed that they really loved what they were doing and despite the pain in their feet, enslaved by their ballet shoes, they really brightened up when finally, everything was under control. However, the most beautiful thing was the fact that their dance at the school was real. I was in a completely different place than the artificial world of the theatre. The ugliness of mistakes, the effort, pain and impatience, the dancers sunk deeply into my feelings and my heart. Soon fascination has allowed me to start working. I could begin work with Agnieszka.
The creative process
I chose the appropriate materials and the scale. I grew found of the daily process of experiencing, learning and experimentation. I knew what to do in a given moment but I could not specify what would happen in the future. It did not bother me. The destination was not that important, the journey was, though. I kept attending the dance rehearsals because being there gave me courage and motivation. With the passing of time, came printing plates, the art concept and prints on silk.
What is significant here is to leave a trace outlined by memory. Particular layers are different signs. Selected poses are repeated and form a circle. From the point of view of the technical side graphic arts itself enables me to achieve the desired effect. The system of signs provides this work balance, stability, precision and discipline. There are only a few poses, however they form a dance and I could dance like that forever. There is no end and no beginning. The vision of dance is delicate, ephemeral. It reminds me of a fog; a dream. The dancer leaves the ground and she is suspended in space, it is because I remembered her like that. I wanted her to detach from the ground.