A Focus on Jaroslaw Kozlowski's Reality

Not much can be found on the Internet about Jaroslaw Kozlowski. The most significant source of information is a Polish website, culture.pl, on which the following description is made of Kozlowski’s work : “As one of the most outstanding contemporary Polish artists, long affiliated with the conceptual movement, Kozłowski has been exhibiting since 1967. His work consists chiefly of installations that incorporate media such as drawing, light, sound, photography and objects. He is also an author of art books, as well as working in photography, drawing, painting and performance pieces. Kozłowski's rich and multifaceted work has its roots in conceptualism. It is marked by a critical-analytical discourse with art and the mechanisms of perception, self-reflection and the building of correlations between the grammar of the artistic language and the sphere of meaning. In the 1970s the artist created works of a purely linguistic nature; they reflected his interest in language games and puns, as well as in transposing the rules of formal logic to reality and vice versa.”

Published in 1972, Reality is quite a mythic artist’s book and an elusive find (I’ve only seen once in ten years). Its content matches perfectly with the above description of Kozlowski’s approach. The artist took a section from Emmanuel Kant’s Critique of Pure Reason (namely ‘On the base of general grouping all objects as phenomena and noumena’) and removed all the text except for the punctuation marks. The result is a book that relates to visual poetry with a systematic yet striking formal beauty.

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