ASS.DEATH.DICKS (read: “aesthetics”)
Horacy Muszyński’s film series, ASS.DEATH.DICKS (read: “aesthetics”), tells the story of six young artists invited to work on an exhibition. It is supposed to be their first major project, and the launch of their artistic careers. However, due to creative-block frustration, envy, or ruthless ambition, the young artists start killing each other, turning the gallery white-cube into a bloodbath. According to Muszyński, nowadays rivalry is not only young artists’ main motivation, but also society’s drive at large. Brutal and bloody, ASS.DEATH.DICKS (read: “aesthetics”) exposes egocentrism and a will to win at all costs.
Within the scope of the project at Ujazdowski Castle Centre for Contemporary Art Muszyński is turning the gallery space into the set of an experimental film that will blend horror with mockumentary. The shooting will begin during the opening reception. Then the gallery’s doors will close for seven days. Muszyński and the invited artists-come-actors will be living and working in the Project Room space, their activities recorded by cameras installed inside and the footage presented on a big screen outside. Once the shooting is over, the Project Room doors will open again. Visitors will see traces of events that have taken place on the filming set. A recording showing what was happening inside the gallery during the shooting of the series will be presented in the Project Room. Also screened will be livestreams from the various stages of post-production, showing Muszyński, editing the footage and producing the soundtrack in collaboration with other artists. A premiere screening of the first part of the series will take place during the exhibition closing.
Horacy Muszyński’s project, ASS.DEATH.DICKS (read: “aesthetics”), is inspired by 2000s mockumentary series such as Trailer Park Boys and 1980s American horror movies, especially slashers with analogue effects as in David Cronenberg or John Carpenter. After the shooting of the series, the gallery will resemble a space that has hosted an exhibition of the Vienna Actionists, only this time the walls will be spattered not with blood, but with coloured sugar syrup.
The exhibition is a follow-up of Muszyński’s project, ASS.DEATH.DICKS. Prologue, begun in 2017 at the Young Triennale in Orońsko (curators: Romuald Demidenko, Aurelia Nowak, Tomasz Pawłowski). Muszyński invited a group of strangers from outside the art world to participate in the week-long symposium. His spontaneous invitation attracted professional actors, re-enactors, and cosplayers. Inspired by discussions with the artist participants of the symposium, each of them came up with their own artistic alter ego. Those invited by Muszyński usually turn into knights, magicians, or outlaws; this time they brought forth fictitious personas of painters, sculptors, or performers. They usually name their characters, giving them histories, memorizing fanciful geographies, magic formulas, alchemies. In Orońsko, they invented their character’s artistic strategy, history of exhibitions and competitions, wrote an abstract of their graduation project. The outcome was a kind of mirror reflection for the Triennale artists.
- Aurelia Nowak