Unfolding on a small stretch of lawn near the loop of the Steeler Straße tram tracks is a disconcerting scenario set in the former sales window of a vacant kiosk: a bed is levitating over a tram map of Poznań, permeated by ropes and cones of an old clock which seem to hang out of the dark nothingness that surrounds the sculpture. The sculpture Standby map II by the Polish artist, musician, and poet Wojciech Bąkowski (b. 1979 in Poznań), positioned in the middle of Essen urban space, was made using simple means and evokes a sense of unease, similar to the feeling that remains after a bad dream. The oneiric composition stands for the dreamlike symbolism that the artist creates in his works: personal memories, imagination, and scenes from dreams are translated by the artist into his melancholy and seemingly gloomy works.
As the artist was born and raised in the Polish city of Poznań, the atmosphere of his work is shaped by everyday surroundings from his childhood: prefabricated housing estates of the 1970s and their seemingly unending little flats with nooks and crannies, the corridors casting long shadows, the lifts, the train tracks. Wojciech Bąkowski, who enjoys international renown as an artist and musician, lives in Warsaw.
Complementing the work Standby Map II, the solo exhibition Route Phantom by Wojciech Bąkowski is being shown by the Neuer Essener Kunstverein in cooperation with Urbane Künste Ruhr in the context of Ruhr Ding: Schlaf.
Steeler Straße 431