Darek Pala. Paintings
The present exhibition of Darek Pala’s paintings at the ART Gallery, Warsaw, is accompanied by a monumental publishing event, the album titled Darek Pala. Paintings. In the Gallery’s history, this is the first such extensive a monograph of its contributing painter. The album features reproduction of over 300 paintings made by the artist between mid-1980s, when he was a student at the High School of Visual Arts in Częstochowa, and 2005, when he painted his most recent works in his Florida atelier. The book also contains an introductory comment by the Gallery Director Wojciech Tuleya, a critical essay on the Pala output by Bogusław Deptuła, and a detailed chronology of the artist’s life and artistic achievements. The authors have divided Pala’s painting oeuvre into seven chapters/genres:
- Scenes from everyday life, i.e. genre scenes, cafeterias, canteens, bath-taking;
- Vases, a genre derived by Darek from still-life and made autonomous owing to him;
- Portraits, being simplified, decorative images of human heads, mostly in profile;
- Timber, painting compositions made on a wooden-strip groundwork, little known in Poland;
- Still-life, featuring exotic fruits as a symbol of one’s dreaming of an exotic adventure;
- Aquaria, or dreams of the tropics coming true, water miniatures painted when already in Florida, as the artist got fascinated by the marina faunas and floras;
- Towels, i.e. dreams of the tropics continued: beach compositions, ”birds’-eye projections” of people sunbathing on their multicolour towels.
The book is concluded with a kind of personal chronology, not boiling down to a mere record of facts. You can find there Darek’s utterances and recollections from various periods of his life; photographs form his school days and those reminding of the ‘Warsaw Pala boom’ of 1990s; descriptions of his consecutive exhibitions and accounts of acquaintances he made with collectors. This chronology makes you familiar with Darek’s various residential places, his beloved restaurants, friends, and girl(friend)s. You get to know when he first met his wife-to-be and what was the year he first displayed his paintings at the St’Art fair in Strasburg.
Darek Pala. Paintings combines traits of an art-critical work with threads of an emotionally imbued story of the life and creative work of this most en-vogue painter of the Warsaw of 1990s, whose art serves as the best evidence of the style and taste of the Polish age of ‘emerging capitalism’.