Leigh Anne Miller, “The Lookout,” Art in America, January 24, 2013
Robert Shuster, “Arresting Images: Richard Ross, Andy Kaufman, Natasza Niedziolka,” Village Voice, January 23, 2013
The gallery is pleased to present its second solo exhibition of new work by Berlin-based artist Natasza Niedziolka.
Proceeding to work both in the tradition of Dada textile artists who embraced the irrational such as Jean Arp and Hannah Hoch and with the democratized folk-art technique of sewing, Niedziolka’s recent embroideries continue to combine whimsical abstractions with implied still life compositions, though now with the focus shifted onto the work’s constructed form. Only hints of color appear in these compositions, issued from delicate lines of colored thread on untreated cotton.
The subtle variation of line color and density in the artist’s stitchwork demonstrates that Niedziolka’s embroideries have become increasingly concerned with relating to drawing on paper techniques. The result is a simplicity that resembles the contemplativeness of sketches and underpaintings utilized throughout the history of painting. By reducing the spontaneous forms and colors characteristic of her past work Niedziolka emphasizes both the physical embroidery technique as well as this historical tradition of working out complex compositions by drawing with minimal elements.
Also exhibited are works from Niedziolka’s new series of photo exposures, which utilizes photo-sensitive techniques quite new to the artist. For these more highly saturated works, the imprinting of found three-dimensional objects onto silk by way of screen-printing yields images that document excitingly variable chemical processes in action. The artist enjoys freely experimenting with different mixtures of light-sensitive emulsions and varying material compositions of objects so that her results are constantly changing. Here, Niedziolka is interested in the transience and ghostly simultaneity of absence and presence that these exploratory works display.
Both series, while diverging in process and in overall aesthetic, demonstrate new inquiries on the part of the artist into indexicality. For the photo exposure works this inquiry arrives via acts of direct imprint of an object onto a light-sensitive surface while for the stitched works it arrives via the translation of gestural, expressive techniques of sketching and drawing to the mediated and systematic technique of embroidery.
Natasza Niedziolka (b. 1978, Miedzychod, Poland) lives and works in Berlin, Germany. Her work has been exhibited throughout Germany and Europe. Last year, the gallery presented a solo presentation of her work at the NADA, Cologne art fair. In The Party of Ghosts is the artist’s second solo exhibition with Horton Gallery.