Konrad Wyrebek’s practice encompasses video, installation, performance, sculpture and painting, and explores the boundaries of contemporary imagery and the intrinsic dangers of technology.
The artist’s ‘Data Error’ series captures video images from television and the Internet and processes them through a succession of digital compressions whose deliberate settings cause corruption of data in transfer between different softwares and devices. Wyrebek sifts through hours of videos until he finds a pixelated bug that attracts his attention. The artist selects the image and crystallizes this split second into layers of paintings. Each layer is realized in turn by a machine and in turn by hand until the artist achieves his desired effect. The resulting work of art interrogates the medium on different levels. From a formalist perspective, Wyrebek references the Neoplasticism of Mondrian and the Cubism of Picasso by exploring the fourth dimension in art seen in a contemporary context as the post-internet realm and the abstract potential of electronic images. However, by introducing the synthetic use of machines in his process and leaving the viewer to question the hand of the artist, Wyrebek challenges the boundaries of painting by raising important questions about the artist’s originality and the role of technology in contemporary art.
On a broader level, the artist interrogates the role of technology in contemporary societies and the dangers inherent to its use. The series of data error paintings ‘2°C above acCLI-M8 X’ addresses climate change and its technological causes by referencing the projected average temperature rise on earth. Wyrebek captures videos of the environment (the sea, forest, trees...) and corrupts the image until it is distorted and abstracted to the point of negating the original referential image. By deconstructing, distorting and fragmenting the image and creating digital glitches, the artist casts a light on the corrupting role of technology in heightening climate change and disrupting the natural realm. Furthermore, Wirebek challenges the constant increase in the amount of data and the pervasiveness of the global informational flow by highlighting the possibility that data errors could create existential risks for humanity and potentially lead to the demise of modern civilization. His manually and mechanically distorted paintings thereby explore the inherent existential risks for humanity posed by technology and question the role and originality of the artist in a post-modern world where machines could soon replace the human mind and hand.
Konrad Wyrebek’s work has been exhibited at Ron Mandos Gallery, Amsterdam, Netherlands (2016), Annka Kultys Gallery, London, UK (2016), Clemens Gunzer Gallery, Zurich, Switzerland (2016), Brand New Gallery, Milan, Italy (2016) and Praz-Delavallade Gallery, Paris, France (2015), among others. Wyrebek’s work has been included in several museum and institutional shows, including the Musée Cognacq-Jay, Paris, France (2016), the Solyanka Art Museum, Moscow, Russia (2014), Point Zero Project Space, London (2013), Academy and Museum of Contemporary Art, Clifford Chance Collection, London (2012), and CutOut, Sotheby's Institute of Art, London (2011). Wyrebek is the recipient of the 2011 Sir John Cass Sculpture Prize, along with both the John Burn Sponsorship Award for 3-D printing and the Metropolitan Works Sponsorship Award for rapid prototyping, both in 2011.
Konrad Wyrebekis a Polish-British artist residing and working in London, UK. Wyrebek earned a master’s degree in Fine Arts from London Metropolitan University in 2011, and previously studied Painting at Westminster University, London, and Art History and the Technology of Fine Arts at the Academy of Fine Arts, Warsaw.