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Drawing on Nepali lokta paper, 2019-2021

What we see is not worth - doesn't live -in our eyes except for what looks at us. Georges Didi-Huberman The organic, natural materials that Dukiewicz and Firląg work with provide not only an aesthetic, but also a positioning in relation to time. The matter that transforms, mutates, is ephemeral, and can even disappear, is embraced naturally by both artists in a transformation that they allow to flow in the hands of time and nature. There is no need for permanence here, but rather a constant desire for discovery, allowing the artworks to progress with their own lives before us, without forcing them to remain in one place or in a predetermined way. It is an art that does not impose, but is generous, allowing the work to breathe. The artists intervene and then withdraw, allowing the artworks to be or change, to remain or disappear. This creed, we could say, they themselves fulfill in their own lives. As constant migrants and travelers, they both feel and yearn for that need for change, that perpetual curiosity to be surprised with each step, to discover in other worlds the means to continue creating. These are artworks that are not closed formulas, nor do they become petrified under the intervention of the artists, but rather find their own paths. Pieces that speak to us about identity, experiences, roots, traversing worlds, and the urgent need to be amazed with each step. Pieces that speak to us about what is very close, but also about distances, about memories... but also about the forgetting of time. Subtle messages that we approach to contemplate from different perspectives: from the microscopic that sharpens our gaze to discover grooves, to a broader vision that leads us to contemplations that are not only visual, but also aromas, textures, sensations. Experiences that transport us to corners that would otherwise be inaccessible. Firlag's work in precise, diminutive, repetitive, yet never identical drawings takes us to mysterious landscapes, to undeciphered languages. Unwritten letters, but drawn. Thin papers of different textures, qualities, origins representing diverse worlds. Shaped by human hands since time immemorial, surfaces created for the purpose of communication. Here they are submerged, as if demanding from within a message to transmit, which Firlag tries to discover as the lines appear in an automatic drift. Lines, drawings, and mirages emerge like living organisms, revealing themselves to us as enigmas, questions that we explore time and time again. ... Magdalena Firląg and Magdalena Dukiewicz have not only collaborated as artists on more than one occasion, but they have also been tireless travel and adventure companions. Now they have reunited here in Warsaw, after two years with one living in Mexico City and the other in New York. But despite the passage of time and the distances, their complicity remains and is evident in this exhibition. The work between the two speaks of closeness and respect: each one brings her own experience and sensitivity, and when they come together, they enter into perfect communion and harmony. That this reunion takes place in the halls of Bacalarte Gallery is an honor and a joy for us. We thank both of them for accepting the challenge, for trusting us, and for their generosity. ​ ​ Inés R. Artola

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