Imre Bak: Situattion


At the solo exhibition of Imre Bak (1939) organised at acb Gallery, his monumental painting cycle from 2020 entitled Situation makes its debut. Although last year acb Gallery has already shown five new paintings virtually at the Art Basel Online Viewing Room, which focused on artworks from 2020, the entire series can be seen now offline for the first time.
Despite the pandemic, the painting of Imre Bak didn’t lose any momentum and freshness in 2020, furthermore it seems that the artist was capable to react even more sensitively and dynamically to the changes which completely reconfigured our reality. After the 2019 retrospective exhibition which was held at acb Gallery ont the occasion of the the artist’s 80th birthday, Bak opened a radically new chapter. The predecessor of the new painting cycle is a smaller format collage-series, based on the silkscreen folder which was released by acb for the jubileum of the artist. Bak created wild and deconstructed compositions out of the recycled silkscreen pages, similarly to his practice in the 1980s. The compositions based on the logic and practice of collages had an enormous effect on the new painting series. The 2019 paintings were dominated by big two dimensional colour planes and systems of paired stripes, which altogether experimented with the creation of minimalist spatial illusion in abstract painting. Compared to the previous harmonic, stabile and restrained structures, the 2020 paintings contain much more spontaneus and dynamic motifs. Furthermore it may even seem that playful figuration enters more powerfully the domain of geometric abstraction than ever before, especially if we consider the most surrealistic motifs of the cycle, like the ‘green cat’ manifested on one of the exhibited paintings.