Mirosław Ratajczak


Edward Dwurnik's creating means permanent work. It is possible, however, to separate some trends, cycles, periods, groups of works, moments of attention, concentration on something specially interesting in a given time. The borders, though, are liquid, corwentional. Revaluation of experiences, references, intellectual, aesthetic and moral categories, constantly takes place. One can say without any risk, that what rules here is the principle of quantity turning into quality. The artists "hand" reveals his own goals, but not without toil. It works simultaneously with the thought, sometimes it gets ahead of it, creating unusual reality of the form. Openess, spontaneity, ambiguity - charged with emotions. Metaphysical unsatiability.

A great number of ideas, plots, and interpretation ways appear, next to paradoxes calling for comments, metaphors requiring explanation. But here, one must be careful. After all, they have already had him, they have distinguished him, named and joined him, but they could not digest him. Now even more carefully: Dwurnik again in the turning point, maybe even the crucial one. One door has been slammed, another one has been fallen out.

The picture. He asks a question if the painter can let himself philosophize in Art ("... here is a certain drama, as he is not always prepared for this kind of work, absorbing time and effort, kind of education in the Academy are not conductive to intelectual efficiency in a proper time. They do not give permanent tools").

"A" letter starts the word describing another feature of the "Hitchhiking" autor's - ambivalence.

"This damned publicism !" Dwurnik says. He does not agree with such a formula. And he is right. Some guys, most often with complexes of a tied tounge, insist on attributing him their own needs. Those who do not distinguish an object from a subject are like them. They see everything as "political" and settle their own rightness accounts.

I consent that Dwurnik, as nobody else, pictured Poland of his times, and the realistic - to a certain degree - method that he has chosen for his work, has put him right into the middle of the kettle, under which devils burn the fire. To show something reliably is almost like to name it. In the jungle of substitute languages, facades, allusions and insinuations not only words become body but also body (picture) becomes word. Some people just can not help uttering a motto, slogan, charm, drawning in a scream, whispers, sighs, gossips, slanders. Please, here is the publicism itself ! Now, it is easy to make commitment or dissenting out of it, whatever people like. Or maybe to become silent. Showing something reliably means almost naming it, but only almost. A small word. The word express would turn out to be useful, too. For example - oneself.

Gombrowicz wrote once that while creating, an artist constantly fights against the world for his own prominence. In the Polish conditions this sentence has a specific colour. Sometimes one must waste his power which is worth fighting against two worlds, on out-of-the-way locality.

First of all, one must be practical. Dwurnik is. He has, maybe, achieved it not in the most economic way (see and "note" Poland as it is), but he has. It was a specific riot against artificiality, spectrality and narrow-mindedness. It resulted with bitterness, of course, but not from Cafe Mozaika, and with a moral right of independence. Then, the storm broke out. I have such hidden suspicions that great historical events, violent social movements are strangely received by the artist, in terms of Art; and, above all, he wants to serve it (as a specific form of the world recognition, specific life judgement, an attempt to transform it), but nobody and nothing else. Such events are in their eyes a kind of gigantic fight, a kind of cosmic almost hooligans' excesses, brutal, ruthless, pitiful. Even worse, as this fight swallows in its terrible greed what is the most precious for them: their small, personal holy war waged against the world. In this point things become deep, there must be made changes of hitherto existing consciousness. However, it can not be only a change of the "views", political attitude or similar externalities. If my intuition is right, in Dwurnik's case things have been briefly like that: his work till the beginning of the 80s, his protest faced the approaching wave and he was threatened by being washed away, by being incepted by the community (actually, this kind of "flattery" of the history is welcomed by many people with relief and therefore they strongly hold the pass for retired-pay); a real artist (I write "real" with satisfaction) must oppose this state of affairs consciously or intuitively (even better). In two ways. Community and himself - as he really was. He can not just cut off his hands or legs, not to mention his own spirituality. He must fight in another way. All this heli seen in Dwurnik's paintings (I would like everybody to be able to see his paintings in big numbers, let's say two hundred or three hundred) is his own hell, cutting out his own way in the community elements, creating a vision which is able to embrace and penetrate all of them. This is a struggle for his own artistic prominence, and it gives effects. The field purifies itself, a big mature metaphor and synthesis of the human fate appears together with phiłosophical depth. Dwurnik has become even more cruel for himself than time. He plunged (as an artist - I repeat) in its heat and pitch, undergoing purification. This is a classic formula: katharsis. He was able to stand up against himself in order to rescue himself, he even managed to accept himself as he had been before and he is now. (This is not a contradiction or an empty paradox). He has at last got to the uniqueness of his own creation so to everyone in himself. And here universalism appears. This what occurs in his pictures, the "publicism", characters and events, known to us, make only a background for a "small sacred war against the world". The whole is a general, frightening and almost beautiful vision; beautiful in this intensity, Edward Dwurnik's vision. He has posessed the right to have it.

(Somebody has written about his paintings that they are: "forms of our universal and national consciousness - painted in oil", and that they are "group visions". I claim that it is not true: but if it is - this is only to some extend, "by the way". I do not even have to refer to the fact that certain success which he had in West Germany, France and Holland or in the USA reveals his painting universality).

Recently, even a few times, the artist has revealed his dream: to paint beautiful, pure pictures, to create "real" pieces of art, from laugh not from mud, clear and understood for everybody. Pictures which are desired by everybody. Pictures which are desired by all artists. Beautiful and Good. I do not think that it is only contrariness, it is rather the evidence of dignity.

("Odra", 1990, no.12)