tadeáš kotrba - Half-broken Memories
The pictures of Tadeáš Kotrba (born 1986) are a clear reflection of his inner character. It is an introvert and contemplative portrait of the journey in life along which each of us faces a series of obstacles and pitfalls. The symbolic arena of this existential story is a segment of the landscape or architecture drawn from Kotrba’s own experiences. These specific motifs are then made more universal in scenes that recall the mystery and disjointed time of dreams. The exterior world of Kotrba’s pictures is therefore an expression of the inner sphere of his recollections and personal reflections. Kotrba’s pictures are characterised by the mixing and contrasting of objective realism and abstract gestural expression. The delicately modelled human figure is confronted by elemental forces in the form of an obscuring veil of snow or rain that it disappears into, immersing itself in solitude. In this context it is difficult not to imagine the symbol of the pilgrim, the embodiment of humanity’s journey through time and space. The presence of man – here, as in life itself – has its mortal limits, as the fading figural outline suggests. Despite the subtle treatment of pictorial elements that, in places, has an affinity with drawing or graphic art, Kotrba achieves a monumental effect thanks to a carefully considered and spacious composition in which the perspectival vanishing point determines the picture’s specific mood. Tadeáš Kotrba is an artist with a sensitive perception of people and the world around him. He acknowledges his own vulnerability, something that is clear in the authenticity of his figural idiom. The existential nature of his pictures is, at the same time, enhanced with romanticism and gentle irony that will remain the starting point of his work as long as he continues painting.
Richard Drury, curator