Filip Markiewicz, born in Luxembourg in 1980, is an artist of Polish origin who represented his country last year in the 56th Venice Biennale with the exhibition Paradiso Lussemburgo. Some of these works are now being shown at Aeroplastics, in a new solo exhibition titled Making Love With Your Ego.
A debate of everyday issues, political questions, and the many consequences of capitalist society are always in sight and on the mind of Filip Markiewicz. The constant production of the artist, almost in line with world events, gives his work the function of a present-day archive, recording the history of our era.
In Eurodance and in Bela Trump, his new drawings, the migration crisis at Europe’s borders and the entertainment industry are paralleled with the life of Bela Lugosi, a Romanian actor known mostly for his role as Count Dracula, whose life (due to his accent and origin) was a succession of secondary roles, low paychecks, and lastly, drug addiction. He was remembered back in the 90’s through Bauhaus’ hit song, Bela Lugosi’s Dead.
Entertainment, politics, and fashion go hand in hand, using the media as both a weapon and a lens on the world. The immediacy of mass opinion and the construction of egos through likes and hashtags are among the concerns of the artist, which are contrasted in his large-scale, impossible to reproduce drawings. Hashtag Depression, for example, is a banknote composition wherein Bela Lugosi appears under the word Neuropa (Neurosis Europa), his portrait supported by a glitched and shirtless Justin Bieber, sided by migrants and parodic versions of Europa. The critic is unerring: in his drawings, all elements come into play – a glitchy, frail, immediate mainstream culture, in which the underground became mainstream without sustainable ideals and superficiality prevails.
The thought behind this exhibition is as real as the simulacra in which we live (…what was that which was real?). On our computers and gadgets, we comfortably watch desperate families outside the borders of Europe, we keep shopping and visiting gourmet restaurants, we focus on celebrities and Instagram, we buy the latest plumping lipsticks. We dance, we are opinionated, we comment and feed. We feed the spectacle.
In Filip Markiewicz’s exhibition, we also dance (to both Bauhaus and Fake protest songs) and though we are conscious, We have the disco in order not to die from the truth.
And in the end, we do keep dancing and still, We want everything in order not to die of the truth.
Making Love With Your Ego is a break on the spin of the wheel, a moment of reflection on the simulacra we live in.
Open to visit until the 25th of June 2016 at Aeroplastics, Brussels.
(Are we conscious yet?)
by: Catarina Vaz