Joanna Wierzbicka is a visual multidisciplinary artist from Poland working with photography, sculpture, video, and installation. Through the iterative process of photographing, printing and sculpting, she brings attention to matter as an active agent. Her artistic research focuses on the body within the feminist posthumanities mode of thought and centers around the experience of embodiment and the materiality of our bodies. She has completed a master’s degree in Photography at ECAL, The ecole cantonale d'art de Lausanne and a bachelor’s from University of the Arts London. Her work has been presented at Verzasca Foto Festival, Espace Arlaud in Lausanne, Lewisham Arthouse in London, and Fort Photography Institute in Warsaw.
Website and Links: www.joannawierzbicka.com
During the residency, I want to work on my new project - a series of photographic sculptures that investigate further (after my recent project) the figuration of compost as a metaphor of how our existence and embodiment are influenced by other bodies among us. Here, more specifically I explore it in the context of vital materiality dissolving binary between objects and subjects. I am interested in what happens inside of compost - how through ongoing movement matter breaks down and emerges, or re-emerges into a new, fertile one. Therefore, I also want to bring attention to various biological processes happening inside our bodies and redefining them as always in process, undergoing modification. They help to question an idea of a fixed body since bones and cells are constantly regenerating and reacting to changes from inside and outside, exchanges of molecules happen over the skin and porosity of flesh, or omega-3 fatty acids float and transform brain chemistry and mood. I seek descriptions of how we live in our bodies, what is running through and across them, what other actants have affected us. I explore the potential of our bodies as navigators in the chaos we are surrounded by, tools for understanding and dealing with current ecological questions helping to attune ourselves to the messy, complex world we are enmeshed in. Personal, community, social, ecological, political transformations are interdependent - our embodiment is affected and can affect. With this project, I examine if as a result politics can get reconceived as open-ended problems and experimentation. I will continue and broaden my work of printing images and sculpting them into threedimensional objects to explore this notion of constantly transforming vibrant bodies. For this series, I am printing images on plexiglass and then thermoforming them into newshapes. I look for uncanny shapes referencing known body related shapes, organ, bones, cells. By exploring the line of oppositions between real/fictional, seductive/repulsive I refer to the definition of an abject and try to translate that moment, or a sensation - how a breakdown in meaning, something expelled from “I” eventually comes to define “I”. Within the series, the configuration of multiple sculptures will allow me to draw on the notion of fluid and formless bodies, or rather an array of bodies in a complex web of materials. They will be made of printed photographs of various matter including images of my own body, still life of arranged, found, created by myself materials. During the online residency, I want to shoot new images, for which I am currently researching how to grow bacterias out of my body as well as from the materials, objects I use or consume daily. After, they will be captured with a microscopic lens attached to a camera and printed on leftovers/unwanted plexiglass, which I plan to pick up from local manufactures to make the project more sustainable