Sasnal Wilhelm

About Artist: Wilhelm Sasnal (born December 29, 1972 in Tarnów, Poland) is a Polish painter. Sasnal received his diploma of painting in 1999 from the Academy of Fine Arts in Kraków.Wilhelm Sasnal was born in Tarnów, Poland, in 1972. He studied architecture for two years at the Polytechnic, Kraków, beginning in 1992, and then became a painting student at the Akademia Sztuk Pięknych w Krakowie, Poland. While there, he helped form an artist's collective that exhibited together as the Ładnie Group until 2000. Ironically named after the Polish word meaning "pretty" or "nice," the members made paintings of their contemporary, often banal surroundings, using a deskilled aesthetic that countered the style valued by their instructors. Sasnal finished his studies in 1999, and then worked briefly for advertising companies in Kraków while also making paintings, graphic novels (his strips are regularly published in "Machina" and "Przekroj", two Polish periodicals), photographs, and films.Sasnal produces pencil drawings, ink drawings, photographs, videos and paintings. In his art he employs a variety of media and cultivates a non-uniform practice. Sasnal is primarily a painter. He paints a wide variety of subjects: More or less banal everyday objects, portraits of historical figures, views of his home town Cracow, snapshots of friends and family members and very often existing images from the internet or mass media are his starting point. Other sources include Art Spiegelman's 1973 graphic Holocaust novel Maus, and stills from Claude Lanzmann's 1985 documentary Shoah as source material.Even if, over the years, one can make out a number of overarching themes, there are always new paintings that shift the emphases and connections once again. The same is true of his painting style. His approach is unpredictable and his methods range from graphic reduction and a pointedly two-dimensional, illustration-oriented style to seemingly autonomous gestures with brush and paint. Like Neo Rauch, however, Sasnal makes the grip of the Communist era on the post-Communist imagination his subject.

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