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From Krakow With Luv

Williamsburg, Brooklyn-based gallery Vertexlist is named after the string of numbers that codify a digital image and, as one might then expect, is a haven for electronic art in New York. From May 9th-June 8th, the space will be an outpost for ten emerging media artists from Krakow who are featured in the exhibition, "Blankly, Perfect Summer." While there is no more heavy-handed organizational logic than shared residence, the show promises not only a professional boost for these Polish artists, but also an opportunity for Americans to take a first glimpse at some compelling work. Karolina Kowalska's JPG/TXT (2007) features the long-term archiving and live projection of snippets of text and images pulled from art, music, and media theory blogs, but no longer visible to Google. The projected juxtapositions instigate an interpretive competition between these ephemeral words and images, and are meant to examine "the special conditions of perception and representation of art works and art-related concepts on the web." Wojtek Doroszuk's film, The Dissection Theatre (2006), is an intense documentary of the autopsy process that explores the culpability of the camera for its own act of dissection, while linking the splayed body to the history of representational art. Lidia Krawczyk and Wojtek Kubiak present their video, Kaleidoscope (2008), which is part of their larger Genderqueer cycle. The piece throws a series of photographic portraits into kaleidoscopic relief, prying ornamental accessories and marked physical traits (facial hair, painted lips) from the whole and places these gendered signifiers into constellation in a way that playfully shakes up conversations about the "social fabrication [of] heterosexual norms." In their respective projects, both Jacek Malinowski and Grzegorz Szwiertnia also focus on the body, and specifically upon precarious narratives revolving around protagonists with physical disabilities. Also included in this interesting summer show are Bartosz Kokosinski, Norman Leto, Agnieszka Polska, Janek Simon, Julian Tomaszuk, and Alicja Zebrowska. For those unable to visit Brooklyn, Vertexlist has compiled an online catalogue on their blog. - Marisa Olson

Lidia Krawczyk and Wojtek Kubiak, Kaleidoscope, 2008

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