Gábor Roskó

Uncertain Asymmetry

Venue: acb Gallery
Date: Nov 10 – Dec 08, 2023
Opening: Nov 09, 2023, 18:00–21:00

The latest painting cycle of Gábor Roskó makes its debut along with his newest ceramics at his solo exhibition at acb Gallery. Compared to the artist's previous works at the 2020 exhibition titled The Secret Life of the Olm, the new series showcases a completely different painterly program. In the last 3 years Roskó has mostly been experimenting with abstraction, and the liberating lessons from this period were incoporated into the new works displayed. The paintings created earlier this year are characterized with a certain monochromy, structured with homogenous tones of white, pink, orange, red and blue industrial enamel paint. For the first time in his career, Roskó has integrated raw fibreboard surfaces into his compositions, that serve as the strongest aesthetic feature of the new works. Roskó's figures evolve from contour lines, a technique derived from ink paintings which he has only applied in large-scale paper works so far. Thus these recent figural works are characterized by a new, spontaneous rawness adapted from Roskó's previous works on paper as well from his smaller-scale abstracts to the big format of the fibreboard.

The figures of the artist painted in a way evoking action painting together with a calligraphic toolset still fit in Roskó’s private mythological painting universe. The human-human and human-animal pairs of images sometimes become hybrids and fight with each other in other cases, but they always seem to be part of a fable. Beside the ram, the alligator and the fish, one of the most often recurring motif of the artist is the fox, which is never a single-pole, one-dimensional character, and bears positive and negative attributes as well. In Roskó’s case, abstraction often means ornaments, and the new paintings also feature stylised devils and men who are waiting for the arrival of the messiah. The carnivalesque figures with exaggerated anatomy are real and fictional characters from the artist’s neighbourhood or from Middle-, and Far-Eastern imagery. The enigmatic English slogans on the paintings play an equally important role as the figures. In his previous paper works, Roskó has often been including texts in order to support the narrative and the moral of the pieces, which can also be interpreted as enigmatic fables.

Gábor Roskó (1958) graduated at the printmaking department of the Hungarian College of Arts. His artistic career started in the beginning of the 1980s. Beside his practice as a graphic and ceramic artist, he quickly made a mark in the local art scene with his unique painting style. Irony and allegory both play a unique role in his works. Ancient fables, elements of the Jewish tradition as well as Middle and Far Eastern cultures can be found among Roskó’s subjectively selected historical and visual references, giving an enigmatic and timeless atmosphere to his works. Roskó’s latest retrospective was held in 2013 in MODEM, Debrecen. Alongside acb Gallery, his solo shows were hosted by the Institute of Contemporary Art in Dunaújváros and the St. Stephen King Museum in Székesfehérvár. His works were featured in group exhibitions hosted by prestigious institutions such as the New Museum in New York, the Ludwig Museum, Budapest and the Hungarian National Gallery.

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