Gdańsk City Gallery / GDANSK (Poland)
02.08.2018 – 16.09.2018


The Nine-Second Attention Span of a Goldfish

There is more to seeing than being in a place from which one can look

Nicholas Mirzoeff

The moment you wake up, reality begins to reveal a series of imagined visions of earthly life. Emerging out of dream, the mind becomes pliable, it begins to soak up sensations like a sponge, gradually transforming into a habitat infested by their excess. You enter the state of density. As you unveil further afterimages of greyness, it is good to find time for a counterpoint, to regain one’s balance. Striving to calm your inner self down, to relax in silence, to become fully present on the surface of the Earth, when the mind becomes passive and free from inner bounds and limitations – that’s when you begin to experience. Seeking tranquility, you situate your body in a well-crafted white laboratory space. Purged of meanings, constantly neutral. Light softly fills the interior, concealing its own source. Devoid of meanings, you change your position. What awaits you at the threshold is an object, a point of departure to building a space – created for the object to resonate in its interior. The relation between object and space reflects that which Sigfried Giedion described when he wrote: “architecture approaches sculpture, and sculpture approaches architecture”. This statement is also an apt characterisation of Teresa Otulak’s thought process. You change your position in no time; when one end goes up, the other falls down at the same time. That’s how the Seesaw mechanism works, formed of a beam and a support. In order to find balance, you need to absorb its working principle. That’s when an obstacle transforms into pleasure.

The installation Seesaw leads us into an expanded field of sculpture, where we confront our own imagination. We experience it as a sensual impression. The location and the sheer form of Seesaw compel the viewer to engage in a confrontation. They induce a state of disorientation, consciously rejecting the excess of content. Otulak’s work marks an attempt to revisit the space above art and around art, and thereby ushers in a reflection on its mechanisms.

Curated by Gabriela Warzycka-Tutak

Teresa Otulak’s individual exhibition Seesaw is an award of the Gdańsk City Gallery in the Best Diplomas 2017 competition organised by the Academy of Fine Arts in Gdańsk.

Courtesy of the artist
Photocredit Michał Szymończyk