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Alex Nowak

Puppets on Fire

Exhibition from February 24th to March 17th, 2023

Puppets on Fire

This exhibition is about the inhospitability and fragility of the body. “Puppets on Fire” addresses the human figure and emphasizes its spatial ambivalence between identity and alienation.The puppet on fire burns its own strings not to be tuned by others. The innervated puppet cuts the strings it is attached to. Alex Nowak works with paint, styrofoam and stucco, creating works in the realm of skin archaeology, pathological pastry and psychodelic humor. Two inspirations from ancient death culture play a role in the exhibition. First, Nowak is drawn to Psychopomps, the anthropomorphic entities of funerary art that guide the souls of the deceased into afterlife. And second, based on the idea of sarcophagus (Greek sarx “flesh”, phagein “eat” and lithos sarcophagus “flesh-eating stone”), he develops a figurative sculpture, which accomodates the materiality of flesh and stone in form of a backdrop. Art making for Alex Nowak becomes a traumatic comedy, focusing on the intangibility of life itself. In this way, the experience of deprivation and closeness merges in the art object.

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01, 02: Musicians, 150x200cm, oil and acrylic on canvas, 2023

03: Angelisa frayed, 220x100x50xm, paint, stucco, paper, styrofoam, 2023

Lilystone, 250x100x50cm, paint, stucco, paper, styrofoam, 2023

04, 05: Untitled, 160x210cm, oil and acrylic on canvas, 2023

Lilystone, 250x100x50cm, paint, stucco, paper, styrofoam, 2023

06: Totenmaske, 30x40cm, oil on cancas, 2022

07: Umarmung, 30×40cm, acrylic on paper, 2022
Puppet on Fire, 160x20x10cm, mixed media, 2023
Portrait 2, 40x50cm, oil on canvas, 2022

09: Untitled, 20x15x10cm, styrofoam, stucco, paint, 2023

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