Home: Sutton, QC
Title: Felix in 2019
Media: Acrylic on canvas
Dimensions: 152 x 101 cm
I decided to submit this portrait of Felix because I am struck by the expression on his face. I felt it needed to be shared. The intensity of his gaze is not just his own. As I look at his face I am confronted with my own feelings: anxiety, uneasiness, and maybe, perhaps hope? Felix is 21 years old. He is a considerate, kind, sometimes silly, fun, lovely guy, like so many people of his generation. He seldom looks that distressed. This portrait mirrors the thought of the future manifesting itself. Can we tell Felix: “Relax, don’t worry”? Doesn’t it make sense simply to face the future, however scary it might be, and get on with working on solutions? Doesn’t it make sense to do this instead of denying that there is fear in our hearts and fear in our children’s eyes? I don’t want to merely hope for a livable future on a livable planet, I want to work for it. I don’t hope. I know. The people with angst in their faces are already working for it …
My artwork has always been propelled by the need to understand, the need to make sense of … the world, ourselves. My drawings based on family snapshots were a way to comprehend death and loss. The drawings of eyes were a way to look deeper, beyond the cliché window of the soul. The historically referenced Time Traveler series was an attempt to reclaim everybody’s past, including those who were omitted by a history written by affluence and greed. I am mapping the human experience so I can understand how we got here, at the brink of self-destruction, and find a path leading away from the cliff. I want to be alarmist. But an existential crisis cannot be solved only by screaming. I am told awareness is the first step. I am putting forth ideas and aesthetic configurations with the assumption that beauty, reason, selflessness, and above all an understanding of how interconnected we are not only with each other but with all life and non-life forms will have affirming effect.
Ewa is an artist who is incapable of limiting her practice to one mode of expression. Her oeuvre includes pencil drawings, drawings with fragments of photography or hybrid drawing, mixed-medium, paintings, photography, conceptual works of ephemeral art, what she calls meteo-graphs or ice-paintings, as well as music videos combining her work with the music of Christian Girard, a contemporary Quebecois composer. Besides her studies in fine arts (Master of Fine Arts, University of Regina), she studied philosophy and psychology in her native Poland. Her work has been exhibited in Canada, the United States, and Europe. After periods of living in Europe and Africa, for the last 20 years, she made Montréal her home. She is based now in Sutton, Quebec.