Don’t you dare to call it work
The new exhibition by Maria Toboła presented at the Ujazdowski Castle Centre for Contemporary Art comprises a pseudo-readymade, a video simulating the works of other artists, and a fake audioguide. In these puns, Toboła analyzes the notions of shame and discredit, and confuses the audience by actions on the verge of public shaming, role-playing, sexual jokes, dressing up, or family awkwardness. Her quizzical work poses a question: what work should be done to not be afraid of talking in your own voice?
Toboła uses quotes from art history and mixes them with elements characteristic for her style: lingual and visual jests, codes extracted from subcultures, class stereotypes, or the battle of the sexes. Her works are not, however, a sentimental journey through the consecutive waves of feminism, or the activistic gesture of a young artists. Toboła is interested in the aspirations of the new middle class in Poland, players in the world of art, its little and big fish. And above all, she is interested in the way these aspirations are visualized. The exhibition turns into a procession of nightmares of the 1990s Polish landscape. Toboła questions the price of antics, quite literally the market price, and the consequences of irreverent and often vulgar art. Can a piece of art be a bootleg – a nagging need to get close to the original?
- Maria Toboła
- (born in 1987 in Leszno). She graduated from the University of Arts in Poznań and completed her diploma in the Audiosfera Studio under the supervision of prof. Leszek Knaflewski at the Chair of Intermedia. She lives and works in Warsaw. Using video, performance, installation, sculpture and poetry she often resorts to wordplays, irony, absurdity and jokes. Her realizations can rightfully be described as silly and unpalatable examples of conceptual art.