Large format colour photographs
Krzysztof Czerwiński, triptych, digital print on board, 86 x 178 cm each
Krzysztof Czerwiński II, diptych, digital print on board, 100 x 100 cm each
In the autumn of 1995, working on “Blood Ties”, Kozyra was driving along Wisłostrada expressway in Warsaw. Suddenly, in the vicinity of the Old Town, a man jaywalked in front of the car. He fascinated the artist – she thought he seemed “faceless”. The man has made such an impression that after just two minutes from the “encounter” Kozyra turned her car back, parked it on the side of the street and started looking for the man by the Vistula river. Kozyra was accompanied by Katarzyna Górna and Krzysztof Malec. After a while they have found the man sitting on the river bank, with his feet dangling above water. He was unconscious, beat up. Kozyra addressed him directly: Would you be willing to pose for my photos? The man nodded. The man came and introduced himself: Krzysztof Czerwiński. He was incredibly passive, indifferent, with a “map” drawn all over his body: bruises, mycosis, scars, burns, tattoos. There was virtually no conversation between the artist and the model. She was afraid to scare him away and took advantage of the fact that He is posing for her, she was trying to “capture” everything, just not to make him bolt away. The contact with the model was limited. He was following requests without comment: “to the side,” “straight ahead,” “turn around”. After the session he was asked for his address. Kozyra wanted to take even more pictures of him, make various series, she was absolutely captivated by him. He gave an address. It turned out to be false. She never saw Krzysztof Czerwiński again.
Kozyra photographed Czerwiński in the scenery for “Blood Ties”, the same as herself and her sister – the cross and the crescent had been already prepared. The encounter resulted in a triptych featuring the beaten and bloody model in three positions against the background of red and white. According to Kozyra, the character of Krzysztof Czerwiński reflects the state of Poland in mid-90s.
The work was shown for the first time at the exhibition “Me and AIDS”, Stolica Cinema Gallery, Warsaw – 9.01.1966.
On April 12, 1996 together with Artur Żmijewski, Kozyra conducted an interview with Krzysztof Czerwiński, businessman and transvestite popular in the gay community. The resemblance of his name to the model for “Krzysztof Czerwiński” shown at the exhibition “Me and AIDS” is coincidental. The model, encountered on the street, could have given a false name.
Krzysztof Czerwiński is the first work in which Kozyra decided to use computer manipulation. Czerwiński, extracted from the background, was digitally surrounded with the flag.
A copy of “Krzysztof Czerwiński” belongs the Contemporary Art Collection Foundation GESSEL of the National Museum in Warsaw.
A copy of “Krzysztof Czerwiński II” belongs to the collection of the Arsenał Gallery in Białystok.
- “Katarzyna Kozyra, Casting”, Zachęta – National Gallery of Art, Warsaw 2010.
- “Katarzyna Kozyra”, Galleria Civica di Arte Contemporanea, Trento 2004.
- Katarzyna Kozyra, Museum of Contemporary Art, Zagreb 2001.
- „Katarzyna Kozyra, The Men’s Bathhouse, 48. International Biennial of Visual Arts, Venice, Polish Pavilion”, published by Zachęta Gallery of Art, Warszawa 1999.
The Artist would like to thank all her collaborators and people who helped in the realisation of the project, in particular:
Grzegorz Borkowski, Krzysztof Czerwiński, Katarzyna Górna, Krzysztof Malec, Mikołaj Miodowski, Tamas Torok, Artur Żmijewski, Galeria Kina Stolica.
The piece was created with the support of Kozyra’s mother, Alicja.