Eternal Dreams

Beseda gallery
21.9.2016 – 6.1.2017

Dusan Mravec, one of the most celebrated painters of his generation, graduated from the Academy of Fine Arts in Prague in 2008 from the Studio of Intermedia Works, a school of Professor Milos Sejn. During his studies, he completed a one-year stay at Milan Knizak’s Studio of Intermedia Works. Undoubtedly the biggest impact on his work was his time at the studio of Professor Zdenek Beran, the founder of the contemporary Czech hyperrealistic painting school. During his studies, Mravec immersed himself in the academic work of classic painting techniques and focused on exploring the subject of still-life – one of the most traditional topics and one of the most challenging for finding a unique, contemporary approach.

Mravec’s monumental paintings represent the new era of contemporary still-life thanks to his virtuosity, tasteful and sophisticated image composition, and unique touch for monochromatic glazes. While in the process of exploring a new direction, he experimented with visual expression to the point where the differences between figurative and abstract became irrelevant.

Inanimate objects composed into still-life are the major subjects of Mravec’s work, along with themes of everyday life. In the past few years, we have witnessed a second line of his work that includes discovering a world of existentially styled landscapes with elements of human presence and records, in which he uncovers and reflects human thought patterns and spiritual explorations. Today, we present a carefully selected set of his newest paintings: “Eternal Dreams”. These are, in the artist’s words: ”A blend of dissections of reality, thoughts behind hidden meanings and mysteries of the world around us…”

Mravec presents a collection of superbly executed artwork that amazes us with a fascinating transposition of free floating stories, depicting uncovered records of prenatal-like memories submerged deep in sedimentation of a collective subconsciousness.

The monochromatic color scheme focuses on a heavy use of brown and earth tones along with black and white. Mravec’s phenomenal light play adds an emotional element to these mysterious, timeless landscapes. These sceneries can be understood as a set of Mravec’s sensitive reflections on present-day issues, basic human inclinations and a need for order.

The paintings are crafted using thin layers of glaze, washed out surfaces, structural modifications, bold brush movements and rhythmic rasters, combining to bring necessary disruption to the composition.

Dusan Mravec’s masterfully balanced set of paintings presented here today undoubtedly represent some of his best work to date.

PhDr.Rea Michalová,Ph.D

Stopping Moments

Galerie Michal’s Collection
Husova 13, Praha 1
30.5.2014 – 27.6.2014

Dušan Mravec (1980) graduated at the Academy of Fine Arts in Prague. He was studying in the intermedia studio of Prof. Milan Knížák (2002-2003), classical painting in the studio of Prof. Zdeněk Beran (2003-2007) and in 2008 he graduated in studio of conceptual tendencies of Prof. Miloš Šejn.

He came in his work from the classical techniques and traditional themes, which he reflected mainly in his hyperrealistic still lifes, which are mostly painted in black and gray. By being able to update the genre for the present, he attracted the attention from the beginning. By trying to capture the essence of the contemporary visuality took him to a more formal experimentation, to release the manuscript to a combination of more diverse painting styles.

The latest image series, introduced here for the first time are more abstract in a form of expression. It certainly could be regarded as a synthesis of his creative efforts of a recent years. The content reflects concern with the world of objects and things in still lifes. On the other hand, the fascination of landscape which often symbolize the human way, reflecting the thinking of a man and his attitude. He found the initial thought which started these new series in the Stations of the Cross. In his case we can see other kinds of Stations / Stoppings. As he says, “stoppings, when a man stops and quiets himself, finding the food in his thoughts, quietly, thinking about reality, about the hidden meanings and interpretations of secrecy and interpretations of what we see, even what we only suspect “. The images are reflections of the view that the author took in the moment, but at the same time they illustrate the story that mankind had always written in itself and that is still repeated in various forms. They are “self-stop ideas, the ideas of the self-mirror, paths and films, which all of us are filming and directing every day. Stopping moments that forcing me to reflect myself and my acts… It seems to me that we all are running somewhere, all of us are making our own boxes, we are collecting trophies, we are collecting stamps on our own path.”

Four years had past since the last Mravec‘s exhibition in the Michal’s Collection gallery. I was never afraid of his artistic journey. However, I felt as if the last two years he has concentrated its forces to now come with generously and brilliantly conceived exhibition, both artistically and conceptually. It seems to me that for every really good presentation integrity comes at certain point. I feel that this intersection is precisely in this exhibition. As if the current presentation (at least for me) culminated a certain transformation of Dušan Mravec as a mature artist that needs no further explication and speak clearly and expressively strongly for itself.

PhDr.Rea Michalová,Ph.D