Layer Cake

Layer Cake
on Martin Kozlowski's Tracing Gestures

Spring 2016 | art review
4 pages


Imagine. It’s a sunny day. Out there, somewhere in the distance, but not too far, some birds are chirping; the same fuckers that woke you up this morning way too early, it’s a Sunday after all. Hitting the streets with a coffee you just picked up from the shop around the corner, you pause for a moment, eyes closed, face tilted upward to get a load of that sweet sweet sunshine, just before it’s gone for the day. When you open your eyes again to cross the street, you notice residual color stains popping up and disappearing throughout your field of vision for but a few seconds. Fading impressions across the chromatic spectrum. Here. Gone. 

That moment, of pleasure, initial disorientation, and a sharpening definition, that is what happens to me, when I see work by Martin Kozlowski. The paintings in the Tracing Gestures series, and the untitled works discussed here, are an excellent example of how the artist manages to evoke a multilayered sensorial experience in the viewer; swaying in between formation and dissolution of thought and matter. Building up a layer cake of affective encounters, Kozlowski, similarly to the way he constructs his paintings, hits a very contemporary nerve. Seductive in its vivid colors and tasty, to follow this mental image of the cake, what follows my initial encounter is the self-imposed question of what the hell is actually going on here?