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Mirosław Filonik


installation; wood, neon lamps (6), cables, transformers; 70x438x63 cm

Mirosław Filoniks Fish is a sculpture constructed of two spatial forms. One, more traditional, is made of wood obtained from an old boat hull, shaped like a fish and shrouded in darkness. The second is a more contemporary form, created from a fluorescent lamp and the light it emits, a shape resembling a harpoon piercing a fish. The artist constructs a dramatic tension between tradition and modernity, as well as a more general metaphor for the struggle waged by the powers of darkness and light. At the time of its creation, at the end of PRL-era, the work was interpreted as an expression of hope in the fight against the collapsing political system. The piece also has an existential dimension: the fish and the harpoon bring to mind hunting, which in primitive cultures was the primary means of sustenance.

Mirosław Filonik is a sculptor and author of light installations. After graduating from the Faculty of Sculpture at the Academy of Fine Arts in Warsaw, he worked with Marek Kijewski and Mirosław Bałka in the Neue Bieriemiennost group, creating sculptures, objects, installations, and actions. Since 1989, he has been using fluorescent lamps, from which he creates simple signs: crosses, lines, and zigzags. An important element of his work is a specially arranged darkness, from which light reaches out. It is a symbol of imperceptible reality and special meanings. This approach is the result of Filoniks interest in Indian and Buddhist philosophy, which he practices and translates into a singular language of art