The Kolonie Gallery in Warsaw hosts a show devoted to the history of the queer-minded art magazine published by the artist, photographer and documentary filmmaker over the past few years, presenting a store of images and notes drawn from the magazine's run and its place in the global LGBT context
Karol Radziszewski has made the male body and homo-erotic culture the focus of his artistic practice, creating suggestive graphics, photographs and videos that delve into the nature of sexualisation and representation in the LGBT community. Radziszewski's DIK fagzine is not a typical magazine in terms of both the commercial market, the LGBT market or even the art market. It publishes a daring, unique approach to the subject matter and reaches an audience of fans all over the world, including the likes of REM musician Michael Stipe. Radziszewski has extended his publishing activities to other genres in the realm of art, such as graphics for clothing design, illustrations and graphic design, as well as photography and documentary video, all focused around the topic of the male body and sexuality, particularly within the Eastern European context where homosexuality is still a taboo subject. According to the gallery's statement on the show, the exhibition uses the language of visual arts to build a "laboratory of non-normative models of masculinity on the territory of the former Eastern Bloc. The picture is completed by an incredible attention at the visual impact of the magazine, progressive graphic layout designed by Monika Zawadzki". The exhibition is an attempt to trace the magazine's operations through its foundations, its inspirations and the progress of its medium and message up through today.
The exhibition presents the archives of the magazine, gathered and stored from its foundation, including magazine covers illustrated by Radziszewski, as well as excerpts from the archives of Filo, an underground zine and the first homosexual periodical functioning the Communist era.
The exhibition opening on the evening of the 8th of May 2012 is followed the following evening by a screening of the artist's documentary film Kisieland, which examines the evolution of queer-oriented publications in the communist era in Poland. The documentary is based on interviews with Ryszard Kisiel, the creator of Filo, the first East-Central European gay zine created in the 1980s. The backdrop of the film is Kisiel's hitherto hidden archive, consisting of dozens of colour slides, documenting photo shoots organized by Kisiel and his friends in a private apartment. The photos were taken in 1985 and 1986 and can be considered a direct reaction to the anti-gay militia campaign (Hiacynt), during which the Secret Police collected materials about polish gays, often using them for blackmail. Radziszewski invited Kisiel to his studio and asked the editor of Filo to reenact the creative process of his photo shoots from twenty-five years ago with the help of a hired model.
The screening also launches the newest issue of DIK Fagzine, themed Before '89. The screening is followed by a discussion with Tomasz Basiuk of the American Studies Department at Warsaw University about issues related to methodological errors and the interpretation of sources with regard to archive materials dealing with minority populations and approaches in creating a narration for queer history.
Karol Radziszewski (b. 1980) lives and works in Warsaw, where he received his MFA from the Academy of Fine Arts in 2004. He works with photography, video, film, installations and creates interdisciplinary projects. His practice extends to magazines, artist books, fashion as well as curatorial concept projects.
Publisher and editor-in-chief of DIK Fagazine, Radziszewski has exhibited at institutions including The National Museum in Warsaw; Zacheta - National Gallery of Art, Warsaw; Kunsthalle Wien, Vienna; Museum Of Contemporary Art Vojvodina, Novi Sad; Museum of Art in Lodz; The National Brukenthal Museum, Sibiu; Galerie für Zeitgenössische Kunst, Leipzig; CCA Ujazdowski Castle, Warsaw; 4 Prague Biennale; New York Photo Festival; Bat-Yam International Biennale of Landscape Urbanism; Biennale of Young Artists, Tallinn; Real Art Ways, Hartford; New Museum, New York; Cobra Museum, Amsterdam.Karol's most recent curatorial concept project is the exhibition Heal The World at the Museum of Art in Lodz.
The DIK. Archives exhibition at the Kolonie Gallery takes place between the 9th of May - 9th of June 2012. The screening at the Museum of Modern Art in Warsaw takes place on the 9th of May at 7:00 pm.
ul. Bracka 23 m. 52
Museum of Modern Art in Warsaw
ul. Pańska 3
Editor: Agnieszka Le Nart
Source: Kolonie Gallery, Museum of Modern Art in Warsaw, karolradziszewski.blogspot.com