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'Living the Gimmick' by Jakub Choma at VUNU Gallery, Košice

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Simulacrum vs. Desideratum

Since times immemorial, men have been endowed with an underlying ambition that manifests itself in the unceasing need to unmask things which seem to be hidden, secret, mystical, unreal or those which in whatever way determine the impossibility of complete empirical understanding of matters and of their true nature.

Deception, illusion, fiction, trick, replica vs. truth, reality, fact, revelation, original.

This eort generates numerous methods and methodologies, aimed at the great revelation and quenching our thirst for knowledge. To attain this goal, men use multiple tools of power and mysticism.

PiD1: I’d like to see what’s hidden around the corner. PiS2: Use a mirror or a drone with a mounted SLR.

Mirrors do not show the truth but merely its reflection. The image of the reflection of the truth is politics and politics is a lie, so is the mirror itself.

Such lies are numerous. Over millennia, they have managed to infiltrate the genetic information of organisms and start guerrilla warfare of induced mutations.

Men find themselves surrounded by a lack of knowledge, interfered by a higher power that forces them to know the unknowable.

Delaying the gratification of knowing and unveiling the truth, however, causes men to lose their struggle against situational censorship, the laws of physics and legal system, leaving them no other option but to come up with their own alternative information, become the source as well as creators of the final product – the alternative reality.

Legends, sagas, myths, personal mythologies, mystification, ritual, conspiracy, fake news . . .

Living the gimmick.


The title of the exhibition references life under certain delusion. Jakub Choma has been exploring the concept of fiction within broader context for some time. For him, fiction is the source of ideas, moods and a preferred working environment, reflected in his work in mimetic ways. Choma’s mimesis, however, does not mimic the world as it is but his own, alternative reality. His paintings are expanded, hybrid, using substitute materials and prefabricated matter.

Hybrid paintings, the bearers of information, stand out as sovereign corporations. Applied airbrush and barely noticeable brushstrokes applying gel that creates transparent relief are the only painting techniques used. In the end, however, even these are defiled by a laser arm which, in the name of technooptimism, covers the entire surface of the painting, burning a new image into the old one.

10.4.18 — 10.5.18

Curated by Nikolas Bernáth

VUNU Gallery

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