Artist Dusan Mocko`s exposition serves as kind of a retrospective reconsidering his last 20 years in
Germany and may well be summed up under the headline “technology as the religion of today`s society”.
Dusan Mocko was born in Bratislava in 1962, today he lives in Germany. His producings offer a wide
spectrum of works, in regard to technical realization as well as thematically, and this way he presents
his artistic development to us. He offers a multicoloured range of both older and primarily recent works
– large size paintings, drawings, graphical works, sculptures and installations.
The artist uses mixing techniques to produce his works of art. Being familiar with the work of a restorer
due to his studies in Bratislava / Slovakia, he keeps reintegrating elder techniques just like polyment
gildings and multi-level transparent ink, and combines these with new methods. Wooden plates always
serve as basis. Dusan Mocko repeatedly lets his paintings appear three-dimensional using his experience as sculptor. That is why only very few of his works are two-dimensional and frequently contain elements like holes, removed parts or added elements within the wooden basis. His large size paintings reveal a new form of art: He reproduces natural-sized photos shot by himself onto the wooden material and repaints them with acryl so that they get a collage-like character.
The large sculptures contain copies of models, also natural-sized, which are afterwards poured in
epoxy resin and treated on the surface. The combination and integration of various materials like stone, bronze, epoxy, wood or iron may put these sculptures into connection with installations or sculpture collages.
Contrasts play an outstanding role in Dusan Mocko`s works. The use and conditioning of various materials puts even more emphasis on topical contrasts. The sculptures show both even and raw, deeply structured surfaces. Partly, strongly artificial colours are put into contrast with classical and common themes.
There are various influences the artist gets his inspirations from. Besides personal experiences, his
studies at the Academy of Arts and his profession as art dealer are playing an important role here. That is why he likes to reuse antiquities, central topics of art history, mythological topics and motives of important historical artists and put them into a subjective context.
He says: “Anything is yet present, we are surrounded by it and we have to find it and make it happen.”
Some of the exhibits are made up of paintings and sculptures which contain sacral symbolism. Here
Dusan Mocko centralises the question of the influence belief can have on the man and puts up with
the thesis that technology is actually the belief and religion of today`s society, a society fundamentally
formed and manipulated by technical progress. This helps to understand works like Madonna Futura
with an amount of cables instead of beams at her back, or Adam and Eve, whose halves of the body
are made of imitated parts of machines.
Dusan Mocko frequently gets back to Adam and Eve. Them as a symbol of the origin of mankind, the
apple as a symbol of the sin. Just like Adam and Eve were given limits not to eat the fruit of the forbidden tree, people today are also given restrictions, which they though keep neglecting so that they themselves worsen their very own lives or even destroy themselves. Breaking through these restrictions is a topic the artist repeatedly deals with in his works. Man has been given reason to make life easier for him, but very often reason is misused in a way that it turns into a weapon.
Just like a red line – or better a marine-blue one – angels` wings trace Dusan Mockos works and vitalize the exposed objects with a touch of transcendence. But why these wings?
“We are all angels with one single wing. And we only can start flying if we embrace each other” (Luciano de Crescenzo). Wings as a sign of the existence of angels in the world that keep helping us whenever we are in need. Wings as a sign of yearning, as a cry for help or a symbol of freedom which helps to leave behind the everyday chaos that surrounds us permanently. Wings that, if you have them, may also lead to a deep downfall.
Another topical field is that of mythological symbolism, including the so-called Babylonien. The artist
lets his paintings and sculptures end tower-like and refers to the tower of Babel by doing so. The same
way people tried to build the world`s largest tower to reach up to heaven and their goddesses as close
as possible, people of the present are increasingly longing for material happiness. Dusan Mocko criticises that and says that people often walk the wrong path to reach an aim, as they mostly follow material wants rather than spiritual needs. He also refers to other mythological sayings like Prometheus, who stole fire from the goddesses to bring light to the humans and who was locked in chains on the grounds of a rock, where an eagle kept eating parts of his liver that renewed every day. The artist compares this legend to mankind and tries to show that the humans sacrificed their evolution in return for a bitter charge, which lets technology eat them. Hinting towards the flight of the Ikarus, Dusan Mocko questions arrogance and the way certain skills are exploited.
Gabriels Apokalypse, a 3.5 m installation combining two epoxy casts of human models with a clasizistic cabinet, functions as a call, criticism or even reminder to ourselves.
Gabriel is the incorporation of an archangel that reigns over the world of emotion and the unconscious.
In Gabriels Apokalypse the angel spreads his wings over a sacrifice placed on the sarcophag of emotions.
The figure is torn in the middle, which implies twighlight connotations. He is caught between
the world of the salvation and the world of damnation and may not escape to heaven yet, as sins and
visions hold him back on Earth.
Another part of Mocko`s works contains visible outbreaks of artistic impulses. Muses, visions, illusions
and dreams created the basis for his work and lifted the artist up far into spheres which will maybe
never be open to ourselves.
Apart from that, we may be happy to explore the artist`s first self-portraits in which he dramatically
or ironically puts himself into scene so that we may get a glimpse of comfortable, ridiculous or comic
sides of life.
In the following catalogue the artist will allow us some insights into his world of thoughts by describing
the illustrations briefly, although at the same time there will be enough space left for the spectator to
start a journey in the search for his own life.