F & T Questionnaire:
Fink and Theel is excited to present our next featured artist Luiza Kurzyna whose work, with both mischievous and tender energy, delights in the expansive potential of play. Her creative lens is at once Jim Henson muppet and burlesque naughtiness, resulting in painting, soft-sculpture, performance and intervention that are bawdy, eccentric and joyful. In Cuddle Monster, soft tubular pink limbs wrap and nearly consume its human counterpart, a surreal and bestial encounter echoing Hokusai's The Dream of the Fisherman's Wife. The same tension between the silly and the erotic can be seen in Fruit Fight in which oversized stuffed bananas and pears are used to pummel participants. Kurzyna inserts her humor into the world as well with interventions such as On A Limb, in which the forked branches of trees lining city streets are adorned with lacy panties and merkins of leaves -- causing them to resemble nudes in headstands taunting passers-by. Through the vehicle of play, the work allows us to explore undercurrents of the psyche, social improprieties, and sensual inhibitions. Though at times the work literally guffaws, when the humor ebbs we are left with a gentle intimacy and a sense for what it means to be in a body -- how that can expand or dissolve when paid attention to. Read on to see how Kurzyna moves through her world and how some regular headbanging can do us all good.
Describe a place in the world where you have felt most alive:
.The place is a feeling…in nature…moving or still...humbledon the dance floor, headbanging, booty-shaking, pouring sweatin the wherever with a loverin the studionestled in my parents’ arms, soft, warm and full of love
Share an image that you return to often:
The sunset, the moon, the flower, the kiss... This one’s by Louise Bourgeois
What is the last thing you read that mattered to you? What will you read next?
Neruda's “Ode to Things”up next- Bugged by friend David MacNeal
Describe an object that intrigues you:
The spoon is pretty damn amazing. It’s been around for quite some time. I use it often. And what a design!
Share a video that resonates with you:
Pipilotti Rist's "Ever is Over All"
“Rag Mop” from The Muppet Show, also featured on the The Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carson, September 14, 1976
Artist and dear friend Yayoung Yoon’s “Quiet Mind”
What must change?
How can we heal?
Patience, compassion, love, and a desire to forgive are my gateways. For oneself and for others. Also, taking care of these green guys, watching sunsets regularly and headbanging...
If you could instantly have any skill or ability what would it be?
I don’t need to be the tomato queen myself, but I’d like to teleport to her kitchen.
What makes you laugh until you cry?
Impromptu goofy collaborative stuff like... these finger dudes coming alive, forming a bond, making out.. and then watching their faces disappear.
Also, the related kiddos provide at least 50% of laugh/cry humor...
As a member of the global community, what is your greatest concern?
Greed, inequality and lack of compassion.
Describe a non-human being you’ve interacted with.
This little beauty lives under a bush, half a block from my apartment. It retracts its eyes, and its undulating body shimmers as it slides across the sidewalk, leaving behind a slimy trail. On my last visit, I counted 51 snails around that single bush. I like to film them and make up stories about their extended family as if it were my own.
What is your mantra?
Everything changesBe braveEnjoy
Also when teaching, this metta meditation is a regular part of my morning commute. I often start with myself, my loved ones, then class, and then the world.“May we be peaceful,May we be joyful,May we be healthy,connected,and safe.”
What can art do?
For me making art is a form of play, exploration, communication and discovery. Looking at others’ art is like eating. It’s fascinating to me how differently I experience an artwork at various moments of my life and how that illuminates who we are and how I change. It makes me feel connected.