Here and Now
Feb 24 – Mar 29, 2024
Saturday, Feb 24
5 – 7 pm
We’re delighted to announce Teresa Gierzyńska’s second solo show at the gallery! We welcome you to see all new photographs by Teresa, paired along with AI videos and a soundscape. We would like to thank Noviki Studio and Antonina Ulatowska (daisy cutter) for collaborating with the artist.
Note: As the show is accompanied by a captivating soundscape accessed via QR code, we kindly ask that you bring your own headphones for the most immersive experience that ensures personal engagement with the art as intended! Thank you for your understanding.
Teresa Gierzyńska's gaze goes beyond the traditionally understood frame. Where meta-description and tagging ends, the artist drives artificial intelligence, terribly conventional in its creations, into a corner. By slicing reality into photographs, she points to places where emotions prevail over simple viewing, where the human experience can – under the right circumstances – merge with the collective consciousness.
The restraint with which the works that make up Here and Now were created is extraordinary. The photograph that inspired the series comes from 1964, and the entire set consists of just over eighty carefully selected moments, recorded between 2004 and 2024. The small number of images in relation to the time frame of their creation emphasizes the rigor of the creative process. Just as About Her, one of the artist's most famous bodies of work, is a turning of the lens inwards, an analysis and reinterpretation of personal experience and a study of women's participation in the world, Here and Now is a gaze directed outwards. Here and Now, although different in approach from the introspective About Her, retains the same methodical approach. It's still me, a lifelong seeker of areas that are interesting to me, writes Teresa Gierzyńska. Although recording reality is the foundation of art, and photography and film are usually made responsible for most of this type of task, Here and Now cannot be simply considered in terms of notation, even though at first glance it looks like a simple record. Teresa Gierzyńska's Here and Now opens up to us the perception of temporality, which emphasizes that what we consider contemporary and current is in fact relative, and the artist, rejecting the need for a journalistic commentary on the current state of the world, offers us a completely different time frame.
Square photographs, with their often smartphone-like nature, offering a grainy, pixelated quality, are the base element of the exhibition and juxtapose low-quality snapshot aesthetics with precious presentation formulas. This final gesture highlights how consciously the artist uses the process of contrasting these two orders. Gierzyńska, a trained sculptor, plays with the space in which she works, exploring and transforming it in order to create new dimensions of perception. She builds up her works on an imaginary grid, which may resemble pixels or icons of a computer interface. Walls, floors, ceilings, window partitions, and the transparent works enclosed in them – everything becomes an integral part of the environment in which the photographic image coexists with video and sound.
Teresa explores moments that take us out of autopilot, forcing us to notice the ephemerality of the world around us. The video works are based on these moments. Constructed based on digitally emulated intra-frame camera movement, inwards and outwards, the video is comprised of Teresa Gierzyńska's photographs thrown into a cauldron of artificial intelligence. There are limitations – AI, despite attempts to imitate the workings of human memory and emotions, cannot fully interpret the depth of human memories. AI comes forward with proposals. By following the kaleidoscopically morphing and interpenetrating images, you notice how differently this virtual camera movement is treated – the Latourian black box seems to be much more concerned with inventing what draws us inside than with procuring what is outside the frame and adding margins. Noviki, the studio created by Katarzyna Nestorowicz and Marcin Nowicki – known for testing the limits of design as well as bold explorations of new media – was invited to collaborate on the video. Their ethos, based on constant doubt and expanding the field, is a constant journey through hyperreality and utopian visions of the future.
The exhibition is as multimodal as today's AI landscape is. The combination of memories, photography, sound, music, film and artificial intelligence requires sublime processing, everything can be translated into everything else. Images evoke memories, AI in the form of video processes them as something like a collective, virtual hippocampus, and the spatial grid allows you to systematize the experience. Ultimately, the element that seals the immersion of the experience is the soundscape. A mixture of daisy cutter's original approach and a playlist carefully prepared by Teresa Gierzyńska – consisting of songs collected over twenty years of exploration on the outskirts of the main musical phenomena. Antonina Ulatowska, known as daisy cutter, is a DJ, curator, and person who finds fulfilment in the oscillation between music and art theory. By mixing electronics, which she explores with emotional involvement, with a set of songs carefully prepared by Teresa Gierzyńska, a non-diegetic soundscape is created as another level of reading Here and Now.
Born in the late 1940s, Teresa Gierzyńska sees no obstacles in sharing her creative process and even outsourcing it to a hyper-contemporary one, this tool evolving thanks to learning based on a database of millions of reactions, images and metatexts generated by all of humanity. If artificial intelligence can also be considered within the framework of collective memory and consciousness, Teresa Gierzyńska does not hesitate to place her memories in the broad context of human experience. This is yet another chapter in the work of an artist open to technological and intergenerational dialogue. In the mid-1970s, the artist discovered a pyłorys – a photocopying machine, the effects of which she experimented with two decades before the spread of photocopiers. Now, using a tool that, although being the epitome of an almost frightening nowness, Teresa Gierzyńska offers us timeless peace. Generation Z and Alpha are considered to be digital natives, i.e. those who are born with the ability to use technology and intuitively understand its mechanisms. The language of technology, like any other language, requires study, focus and cultural reinforcement, regardless of innate abilities. People who are not digital natives can navigate the world of new technologies fluently, and even – perhaps thanks to distance and embeddedness, here in the context of Teresa Gierzyńska's artistic practice – they can have a more sober recognition and better understanding of technology in the context of the historical process. Teresa Gierzyńska is free from the panic and anxiety that often accompanies considerations regarding the development of AI. This text though, is an alliance of bio and artificial intelligence, and you, dear reader, answer the question for yourself how you feel about it.
The artist also created a Spotify playlist to accompany the show and we are happy to share it!