Rastislav Podhorský: „The Awareness of my metaphysical desire“


In my latest works I have arrived at a most plausible synthesis of my own approach: art in my understanding is about metaphysics, and my art practice is the awareness of my metaphysical desire. This is what I believe to be a major driving force of my creative practice. Even if in the context of contemporary art for various reasons this is a largely ignored approach, I uphold my opinion that it is worth the grapple with and subject it to a thorough research.

Rastislav Podhorský
Rastislav Podhorský

I advocate the opinion that is assuming: an image cannot always be explained only by means of verbal concepts that have preceded its creation; on basis of the social and cultural characteristics of the era in which it was created; on basis of the context into which it is set; or only on the basis of the subjective experience of the author or viewer; neither only though the material of which it was formed; – since a good image could be irreducible to these explanations. It may comprise something in addition which would be inaccessible to current verbal thought or perceptive capabilities – in these terms I talk about metaphysics in art. I think of visual art as an independent way of articulating thoughts (differing from verbal thinking).

In other words as Paul Klee has put it: “Art makes the invisible, visible.” My deepest conviction is that this function of art has not changed to date. (There have been dramatic changes in the way of achieving these ends.)

I pursue figurative painting and drawing and it would seem that figurative art follows the opposite path: it is not making the invisible visible, but is merely mimicking the visible. It seems that figurative art (especially the so-called “realism” branch) offers only what can be easily outlined, what can be pointed at, thus it has no means to open new horizons neither for perception, nor for thought.

This paradox is one of the driving forces of my practice: the issue is exactly to immerse oneself in those most recognizable forms (“we are seeing a man, an object, an interior…”) and at the same time compose these forms in such a way that the image can make that sensible, which would otherwise remain mute.

In my visual art I focus on: 1. the problematic of the sighted 2. the re-evaluation of the displayed. A figurative image (even the “realistic” one) is not only mimetic, but under certain circumstances makes something else visible.

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Rastislav Pohorský is a young Slovak artist from Bratislava born in 1990 born 1990, Slovakia lives and works in Bratislava, Slovakia. EDUCATION 2015-present Doctoral studies, Academy of Fine Arts and Design in Bratislava, Division of drawing (doc. Mgr. Emöke Vargová); 2009-2015 Magister art at Academy of Fine Arts and Design in Bratislava, Painting department (studio +-XXI, prof. Daniel Fischer, during 2014 studio Mal+by, doc. Mgr. Klaudia Kosziba); 2005-2009 School of applied arts, Bratislava (sculpture department, akad. soch. Vojtech Pohánka). SOLO EXHIBITIONS 2016 Vo všetky nedele, Ateliér XIII, Bratislava, SK; 2016 S prstom na opakovaní (s dychom po korení), Nitrianska galéria, Nitra, SK; 2015 Nevynechané, Magna gallery, Piešťany, SK; 2015 S dychom po korení, Photoport, Bratislava, SK; 2013 O kľaknutie menší od seba, Photoport, Bratislava, SK; 2013 Prítulky a útočiská, Ateliéri studená (Hangár), Bratislava, SK; 2012 Zametené (Nehybní v nehybnom), Artotéka, Bratislava, SK and many group exhibition in his homeland and Czechia, Poland, Finnland, Italy &Hungary. AWARDS. 2015 VÚB foundation award for painting for young artists (1st place winner); 2015 The Rector`s Award of the Academy of Fine Arts and Design in Bratislava. THEORETICAL WRITINGS. 2017 Prievozník. About people beyond art and about characters / portraits in art (VŠVU, Slovart, Bratislava)

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