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The Warsaw Voice » Culture » December 1, 2014
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Art After the Internet
December 1, 2014   
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A new exhibition at Warsaw’s Museum of Modern Art studies the impact of the internet and new technology on daily life.

Private Settings: Art After the Internet is an international exhibition that brings together work by artists born in the 1980s and 1990s. Their careers began at a time when the internet and mass digital culture were flourishing at a rapid rate. The exhibition examines how rapid technological progress and the use of new media affect personal identity and social relations.

For young people, the internet is an integral part of their world. It encourages them to design and manage their own identities. The internet has also fundamentally redefined concepts such as freedom, privacy and anonymity. The urge to express oneself and post opinions has irreversibly changed the way people experience bonding and relations with others. Some critics say that rather than encouraging us to get to know one another better, the Web prompts us to compulsively document our lives as we want them to be seen by others.

The young artists featured in the exhibition are keen to ask questions about the nature of visual representation, that is the way people today perceive and express themselves through images in a world dominated by aggressive self-advertising and limited attention spans.

Private Settings: Art After the Internet is on show until Jan. 6.

The Museum of Modern Art is also hosting an exhibition of work by Slovak sculptor Maria Bartuszová (1936-1999), an artist who stayed out of the mainstream throughout her lifetime. Bartuszová liked to experiment and intuitively ventured into new subjects, but she was never accepted by the leading modern artists of her day. She often worked in isolation, on the sidelines, even though she was a pioneer who invented a contemporary language of expression.

She was discovered by a wider public in 2007 during Documenta 12, a major exhibition of international art held once every five years in Kassel, Germany. Bartuszová’s work then began to make its way into international exhibitions and prestigious collections of modern art, though she is yet to be given the recognition she deserves. The exhibition in Warsaw is an attempt to show her work as a coherent whole.

Bartuszová mostly worked in plaster, which by nature is a temporary and impermanent material. While refined in form, most of her sculptures are fragile, giving the impression of being unfinished, transitory experiments. Depicting mobility and hesitation, they are suggestions rather than statements.


The exhibition runs until Jan. 6.
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