Czech-painter photorealisict paintings of swirling colors. Once Marek Slavík is known for his abstract and figurative, his work places the female form in a sea of what looks like liquid ooze. Wayward lines fill the frame with depth, bringing these fictional landscapes to life. The viewer’s eye travels around the canvas like a maze, searching for some sense of order in these chaotic puzzles. It’s the tension between the real and the unknown that drives Slavík to paint with such refined detail, drawing the viewer into his vortex of mystery.
Slavík begins by creating a model for his paintings. He pours a malleable material into a tank of water as the colors swirl around organically, collecting nearly a thousand photographs in the process. He selects the best photo and begins recreating it on the canvas, carefully documenting every line, shape, and curve with exquisite detail. Only then does the figure emerge, coming into the frame like a fish out of water. His figures become part of the chaos as they get ensnared by these potent tornadoes of slime. The artist leaves space for the viewer to inject their own interpretation onto the work. What could be a few drops of food coloring evolve into angelic forms, clouds of doom, ghostly apparitions or a tidal wave of chewing gum. Left to their own devices with just a few clues to lead the way, the viewer is free to let their imagination run wild as they try to make sense of these abysses of color and form.
Slavík studied classical oil painting at the Academy of Fine Arts in Prague in 1982. He currently lives and works in Prague in the Czech Republic.