passing away, Patrycja Jastrzębska

Turning back to the question of ‘language non-transparency’ in the artist’s works let us focus on the implementation of the project Prze/mija/nie [Pas/sing/Away]. In Polish version the title consists of three words: Pre/Passes/Not which all together comprise the word ‘Passing Away’. The work is in the form of a painting triptych. On the white canvases hung one next to another there is a black inscription divided in such a way that on the first canvas there is ‘prze’ [pre], on the other – ‘mija’[‘passes’] and on the third one – ‘nie’ [‘not’]. Splitting the word into three syllables caused it to have lost its primary meaning. Owing to this operation Dróżdż presents this word in a completely new context and makes us see it in a different way than through a common and unambiguous association. Obviously, we do see in this work ‘passing away’ conceived as the noun which evokes associations with the time flow but simultaneously we can read something more: Pre passes not. Passes not. Not. Not passes away – we may try playing with the word and its meaning at the same time. Actually, the artist’s intention is to make us start playing with the expression and to stimulate our creative thinking and force us to read the already known words anew. The meaning carried by the word ‘passing away’ has been neutralized by drawing the reader’s attention to the material aspect of the word and its purely graphic notation. […]

The fragment of the essay Pre Passes Not. Passes Not. Not Passes Away. About the Exhibitions of Works by Stanisław Dróżdż ‘The Spaces of Concrete Poetry’ in the gallery Appendix 2, 22.04. 2008, ’Obieg’,