Magdalena Franczuk – [↑] Untitled from Body Language series (2014); [←] Untitled from The Needle danced with the Thread (2014); [→] Untitled from Sailing the Big Sea (2014); [↓] Untitled from Mathilde and the other girls (2015)
What the eff is going on in Poland?
Seriously… for better or worse, I have become a curator. And whereas I’m frequently asked by folks I interact with AFK about various issues pertaining to photography/image making, I’m generally going to address specific considerations (i.e. the nature and functionality of color in lens based fine art will elicit references to Prue Stent), the female gaze (Arvida Byström or Ashley Armitage) best American fine art photographer (unequivocally Allison Barnes).
But if you ask me to create a top ten most exciting image makers in the world right now, I swear to fucking Christ, the list is probably going to be half women working in or connected distantly to Poland (ex. Allison Barnes is of Polish descent).
I’ve not done the above images justice by removing them from their rigorously-cultivated respective contexts. (It really is very much worth your time to click over to Franczuk’s page and tuck in. It’s goddamn breathtaking.)
In choosing images, to pass along to you I very much wanted to focus on both the incredible production design which went into making these. But, that’s also telling because the production design is merely an organic facet of the whole. There’s this constant balancing between curiosity and caution, between fantasy and reality.
And it’s all surprisingly racy–but whereas the rote pathway for most erotic work follows the line between explicit and graphic depictions of desire/sexuality, there’s a careful duality in Franczuk’s work; less implication than uncertainty with regards to where on experience (say: intimacy) ends and where another (say: arousal) begins.
For an artist in her early twenties, there’s a distinct visual voice and a strong sense of faith that the process of mastering technique and contemplating concept will result in a sometimes strange but always unshakable sense of something fundamentally true.
Absolutely amazing work.