Rafal Zawistowski – Emotion through Materiality

Rafal Zawistowski – Emotion through Materiality

A look into Rafal Zawistowski creative process

Rafal Zawistowski tactile canvases caught Charles Saatchi attention in 2012, and we were curious to learn more about his creative process. Rafal’s organic technique comes to life in his studio where he works on multiple canvases at the same time. His creations emerge from an organic flow, as he recycles paint from old canvases and applies it to new work. After showing at the New Contemporaries, the artist career took an unexpected turn: the acclaimed arts collector Charles Saatchi bought a couple of his pieces that were later shown at the Saatchi gallery. After his first solo show, the collector bough all of the works being exhibited, boosting his career and expanding his visibility in the competitive London arts scene.

 Lucent 70cm x 80cm Oil on Canvas

Lucent 70cm x 80cm Oil on Canvas

Ramble 50cm x 60cm  Oil on Canvas

Ramble 50cm x 60cm Oil on Canvas

Lucent 70cm x 80cm Oil on Canvas

Lucent
70cm x 80cm
Oil on Canvas

Silent 100cm x 120cm Oil on Canvas

Silent 100cm x 120cm Oil on Canvas

Rafal explores the tactile quality of his wax and oil method, investigating the desire it instigates on the viewer. The thick layering of paint creates an urge to go beyond looking, for a desire of touching the work emerges within the observer. He is interested in the duality his work provokes. Either for the struggle between touching and seeing or the tension between conventional ideas of beautiful and ugly, his subject comes to life through the study of such dualities. Sculptured canvas portraying religious figures break with conventional clichés of representing spiritual subjects the same way his landscapes break with conventional modes of representation. Raised catholic and having spent a year in Florence, Rafal looks back at the Renaissance masters and their creative process, commenting on ideas of the immaterial through materiality. Once again a duality is revealed when two opposite meet: historical and contemporary.

Adam and Eve (Private Collection) Oil and wax on Canvas 100cm x 120cm

Adam and Eve (Private Collection) Oil and wax on Canvas 100cm x 120cm

Benedict XVI (Saatchi Collection) Oil and Wax on Linen 70cm x 60cm

Benedict XVI (Saatchi Collection) Oil and Wax on Linen 70cm x 60cm

Eden #2 (Private Collection) Oil and Wax on Canvas 165cm x 200cm

Eden #2 (Private Collection) Oil and Wax on Canvas 165cm x 200cm

Mother and Child (Private Collection) Oil and wax on Linen 70cm x 60

Mother and Child (Private Collection) Oil and wax on Linen 70cm x 60

Pius X (Saatchi Collection) Oil and Wax on Linen 70cm x 60cm

Pius X (Saatchi Collection) Oil and Wax on Linen 70cm x 60cm

His works are open ended and the aesthetic experience is underlined by an intimate contact between work and observer. Rafal is having a solo show at Le Dame gallery, opening November 12th to December 4th, where he will be displaying his new series. You can also see more at his website. 

Author: Ana Sofia Contrucci

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