Jarek Puczel graduated from the University of Warsaw in Poland and has gained his artistic experience as a filmmaker, graphic designer and painter. His paintings have been exhibited in US and European galleries. They were used for book and CD covers, as well as for movie and theatrical posters (National Theatre in London, Festival of New Cinema in Montreal, etc.).
Jarek Puczel explores the depths of inner world feelings, relations and thoughts. Known for his outstanding graphical clarity of reduced yet expressive colors, portrays deeply hidden, intimate connections within couples, combining representation and concept.
His clean, precise compositions are intense and emotional, but at the same time soothing and calming. The artist reduces the image to the most essential details. “Intimate anonymity” of his faceless figures lets viewers reflect on their own emotions and thoughts in his work.
In his work we can sense European icon heritage – a deeply encoded tradition of symbolic depiction of a figure, painted mainly on flat backgrounds. As Puczel sees it, it sounds like an echo of the notion that the outside world doesn’t matter. Indeed, in his paintings the outside world is evoked very subtly, left to be imagined, or altogether absent. The recurring motif of illusion, of overlapping dimensions of reality – soap bubbles, film projections, shadows, visions, mirror reflections – makes us wonder what genuine reality is. What does really exist? In the end – only the cognitive subject. The person who looks, feels, experiences: the human being and their inner world with the connections to others. And this is what Puczel’s work is focused on: human subject.
Puczel is the master of depicting relationships – often difficult ones, full of inner tension that feels more intense when the figures are caught apparently motionless. An intense play of deeply hidden emotions, the state of suspension, moments of difficult decisions, wanderings and searching – all these moments are rendered with striking honesty, which leaves hardly anyone indifferent. On the other hand, Puczel’s work still contains the truth about a mystical connection between people. We can see a tenderness and a closeness so profound that the figures blend, becoming one with boundaries between them dissolved.
The scope of this truth is broadened in paintings where human figures merge with the landscape which filters through them and lights them up. The space shared by lovers or friends evolves into a common space shared with the whole universe. The focus shifts from personal emotions to something larger: we are connected not only with each other, with our close ones, but experience oneness with the entire creation.