There is something inside Sulymenko’s watercolour paintings, that retains an audience spellbound. In the design of laconic simplicity, she depicts mysterious and puzzling environments. These are largely interior but also exterior spaces, narrow and closed, surrounded by walls that look palpable. In this silenced ambiance of transparent gray air, the eye does not attain the horizon—there appears to be none.
The sceneries are hardly inhabited. When anonymous figures seem, they are primarily by itself, sometimes two or 3 of them. Not characters, only beings. They do not glimpse directly to the viewer, they gaze away. And even with the search for a relationship, they do not truly belong crossroads of human relations are uncommon right here. It is as if time has stopped. Captured in a instant, which would seem to be extended. The moment reworking into a condition not turning into, but rather—and just—being. Caught amongst the “no longer” and “not nevertheless,” they are waiting for anything to emerge, transpire, maybe adjust.
“Etwas fehlt, was das ist, weiß person nicht,” writes Brecht in Mahagonny.1 For Maria Sulymenko, it is not so significantly about a unique loss or disappearance, unique suffering or grief, but about the fragility of existence and the inevitability of darkness. She depicts loneliness but also deliberately decided on solitude angst, and traumatic fears, as nicely as contemporary distresses and anxieties that direct to absurd scenarios and the imaginary. She quietly, practically naively, thoughts the issues of just being (and not necessarily getting to be), of merely enduring in this environment. There is no naïve optimism, but there exist bits of hope, she statements, an anticipation of a superior time. “Each instant is a leap forwards from the brink of an invisible cliff, where time’s keen edges are frequently renewed. We carry our foot from the reliable ground of all our daily life lived hence considerably and just take that perilous stage out into the vacant air. Not mainly because we can claim any unique braveness, but for the reason that there is no other way.”2
at Georg Kargl BOX, Vienna
right until Oct 8, 2022