Marta Skoczeń — Attachements

Exhibition

Publishing, film, new media, photography...

Marta Skoczeń
Attachements

Ends in 21 days: April 13 → May 11, 2024

For Marta Skoczeń’s first solo exhibition, Galerie Dohyang Lee presents a selection of works by the artist, from her earliest creations to her most recent, synthesising her work around the notion of attachment.

Attachment refers to a deep emotional and affective bond between one person and another, or between a person and a thing. It is a fundamental process in human development and plays a crucial role in shaping human relationships. Widely studied in psychology, it is associated with family ties and the cultural heritages that stem from them.

Attachements (Attachments) is the title of the artist’s latest video production, and is the centrepiece of the exhibition. Two women are portrayed: one evoking a maternal figure, the other evoking adolescence. They are shown in turn, one then the other, without ever being together. They each seem to be experiencing a form of solitude, locked away in enclosed domestic spaces. Are they in different places? In separate spaces? Are they far apart? The distance between them, whether physical or emotional, is elusive. Devoid of words, this film poetically illustrates the notion of attachment and generational transmission, from woman to woman, mother to daughter. It depicts the unspoken wounds inherited and passed down from generation to generation in a non-verbal way. The work captures the passage of time, interweaving the cycles of these women’s lives with those of nature: animal rhythms, meteorological metamorphoses, and the flow of water.

Marta Skoczeń instinctively makes women her favourite subject. She depicts them at every stage of life, from childhood to old age, through adolescence and motherhood. This cyclical representation illustrates the different seasons of life. In the culture and history of Marta Skoczeń’s native Poland, femininity is synonymous with power, but also with suffering. Marta Skoczeń’s photographs and videos depict these women as sunken in their own world, as if disenchanted, their gaze frontal but elusive. Psychological and transgressive, these portraits of women isolated indoors, in domestic spaces, evoke a physical and emotional power. The attachment these women have to the home refers to the emotional and affective bond they can develop with their home, through the security, comfort and familiarity it can evoke. Experiences in these spaces, whether positive or negative, influence this attachment and strengthen the emotional bond with the space, which becomes a shelter, a refuge. It offers a feeling of protection from the outside world. Yet it remains a space of isolation and confinement, unfortunately often assigned to the social role of women.

The artist juxtaposes these interiors with moments of contemplation of natural outdoor spaces, creating a striking contrast but also establishing a deep connection with the female characters she depicts. Les filles qui se baignent (Bathers) depicts two young girls on the edge between childhood and adolescence, navigating a delicate period of transition. L’eau et la lumière (Water and Light) is an instantaneous illustration of the different temporalities of nature, the fragility of the passage between the seasons and the stages of life. On the other hand, Regina offers us a portrait of an elderly woman at the top of a vast hill. Despite her apparent solitude, she bears a serene smile. These natural outdoor spaces sound therapeutic and liberating, seeming to fill a void. They symbolise risk and freedom. They evoke peace and escape.

Ménage et alentours (Housework and around) changes the scene. This video transcribes a narrative of a female character who emerges from her domestic space. Like a journal, the video illustrates fragments of life, snapshots of urban and natural landscapes filmed with a telephone, which the artist combines with original poems. In this approach, she questions codes of beauty, the position of women in the city, and social conventions.

Marta Skoczeń (born 1994 in Poland) is an artist working with video, photography and drawing. She is a graduate of the École Nationale Supérieure des Beaux-Arts in Paris (DNSAP 2020, Clément Cogitore studio) and the Academy of Fine Arts in Warsaw (MA 2019, Graphic Art). In her work, she talks about femininity, memory and the encounter between the past and the present, navigating between the fields of art and cinema. In 2022, she won the LOOP Fair Acquisition Award for her film Maison sans clé (House Without a Key), presented by Galerie Dohyang Lee, Paris.

Marilou Thirache. Translated in English by Emmelene Landon
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The artist

  • Marta Skoczeń