Csaba Kis Róka: Extinction is a form of art

2013.11.22 - 12.20.

Csaba Kis Róka is known for his unique and expressive painterly universe. His
imagery is based on the Central European male experience with all its taboos.
along with the historical heritage of romantic nationalism and militarism. Kis Róka’s
visual dictionary is derived from a wide range of visual languages from the Christian
iconography of suffering, through B-category horror movies, to the traditions of
representation in local historical painting. The violence of his bloody crowd scenes
has primarily to do with dominance and male power, the manifestations of which
are both a historical phenomenon and a still existing experience for those born and
raised in the societies of the Central and Eastern Europe.
Kis Róka’s phraseology combines the painterly tradition of the period between
the late renaissance and the late 19th century with the approach of early 20th
century expressionist painting. The artist often uses classic compositional patterns as
prefiguration for his narrative tableaux, thus amplifying the tension between content
and form.
The style of Kis Róka’s newer series of paintings has moved from narrativity
towards a more painterly approach, where the emphasis shifts from a detailed
depiction of various acts of violence to the expressive tools of painting. Therefore, the
compositions of the pictures have been simplified; the figures in the paintings depict
individual phases, rather than actions.
The exhibition entitled Extinction is a form of art draws a caricature of
contemporary society through a possible future, as a potential outcome of extremist
responses to the economic and social problems recently culminating both worldwide
and in Hungary. The escalation of palpable economic and social disparities causes
remarkable distortions worldwide. As the puzzled masses of welfare societies
experience their economic decline, they become increasingly furious and more prone
to manipulation an account of tendencies beyond their influence. Perhaps in their
desire to create order from the chaos, people increasingly believe that violence can
be a solution to these problems. The paintings shown in the exhibition capture a
possible final stage of this course, where the individual, as a creature abandoned,
must face the acts of its own making. The wait for a future Armageddon is part
of every culture. In our age, the fear of the collapse of human civilization and the
depiction of imagined post-apocalyptic conditions are perhaps most strikingly – and
most effectively, in terms of reaching the masses – represented through the medium
of cinema. The world presented by Kis Róka reveals a close relationship with these
depictions of decay and human degradation.