Piotr Uklański: a new spin on collage

Colourful artwork of a volcano
The career of multi-talented artist Piotr Uklański has spanned painting, photography, performance, film and textiles; he also turned his hand to collage in 2000. Pictured: Untitled (Castle Romeo), 2015 
(Image credit: Nahmad Contemporary)

The art of collage just got a huge boost from the Polish artist Piotr Uklański (in terms of scale, at least). The Madison Avenue Nahmad Contemporary is spotlighting the artist in ‘Piotr Uklański: Collages’. Maintaining studios in both Warsaw and Greenpoint, Brooklyn, he serves up work that in some cases ranges more than ten feet across and seven feet in height.

While the multi-talented Uklański’s oeuvre has ranged across painting, photography, performance, film and textiles, he turned to collage in 2000.

His technique is a radical departure from the norm. Rather than pull images and text from newsprint and magazines, Uklański paints huge sheets of paper in a dazzling array of tones, from slate blue to pungent orange and verdant green, and then tears portions so the raw white edges are shown. Finally the torn paper collage is pasted directly on plywood. Seven works in all are on view, spanning the past 15 years.

Uklański’s 2010 Untitled (Ivy Mike), for instance, measures over seven feet across, comprising an expanding mushroom cloud (disaster is a frequent reference in his art) against a balmily blue sky and demonstrating the immersive quality of his practice.

‘The torn paper collage series,’ says dealer Joe Nahmad, ‘is a powerful body of work that epitomises Uklański's unique ability to transform a humble craft tradition into a highly charged, subversive practice.’

Large white studio with 3 colourful prints on the walls

The Madison Avenue Nahmad Contemporary is now spotlighting this latter discipline in ‘Piotr Uklański: Collages’. Pictured left to right: Untitled (The Day After), 2004; Untitled (Castle Romeo), 2015; Untitled (Rocket's Glare, Over Najaf), 2004 

(Image credit: Nahmad Contemporary)

Various colourful prints on white walls

His technique is a rather radical departure from the norm. Pictured left to right: Untitled (Storm Rider), 2015; Untitled (Dark and stormy), 2015; Untitled (Lightning Bolt), 2003; Untitled (Ivy Mike), 2010

(Image credit: Nahmad Contemporary)

Purple & red artwork

Rather than pull images and text from newsprint and magazines, Uklański paints huge sheets of paper in a dazzling array of tones and then tears portions so the raw white edges are shown, before pasting the collage directly onto plywood. Pictured: Untitled (Lightning Bolt), 2003

(Image credit: Nahmad Contemporary)

Blue & pink artwork

Untitled (Dark and stormy), 2015

(Image credit: Nahmad Contemporary)

Red artwork

Untitled (Storm Rider), 2015

(Image credit: Nahmad Contemporary)

INFORMATION

‘Piotr Uklański: Collages’ is on view until 28 October

Photography courtesy Nahmad Contemporary

ADDRESS

Nahmad Contemporary
980 Madison Avenue
New York, NY 10075

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