Uneasy Ride with V.F.
Meeting Viktor Frešo was fast and explosive. Approximately 15 years ago the young artist called me and said: “I want to have an exhibition at your gallery.” His answer to my question of when was brief and hellishly confident: “In three months.” And this is just how it was. We met and I was impressed by this good-looking, pleasantly arrogant hotshot with short hair, his rebellious attitude and his visual work. This was the beginning of our long term and even sick cooperation and shared explosive journey in the world of art.
It has become a friendship of two hulks; the blood brotherhood of a mongoloid from Bratislava and a passionate scribbler from the Spiš region. In addition to exhibitions and texts, it featured turbulent times, endless debates about contemporary art, futile quarrels about our weak scene and acidic gallery environment. Always over mineral water and Coke light. Eventually we agreed that “a table had four legs, but it could still fall apart” – in other words, that artists don’t have to understand their own art and that art historians don’t have a clue about visual art. But this gave us mutual strength and kept us going. As time passed, this turbulent young man became a good father and the creator of the cult of Niemand. However, his new solutions, absurd situations and resolute projects always surprised me. After his father died, Viktor delved deeper and deeper into the history and archives of his own family, and this exhibition showcases his finds and trophies. It is the outcome of his compromised family and personal memory.
I will get to the beginning at the end. The title of Vicki’s first project was in the form of a question: Who’s the King? – in which he convinced famous political and cultural celebrities to be photographed with him. I think that today it’s clear who’s the king, carp or stud here, and yet that’s not all...
art historian b.skid
Viktor Frešo studied in Bratislava at the Academy of Fine Arts and Design in Bratislava and in Prague at the Academy of Fine Arts where he graduated and received his diploma in 2003. Frešo belongs to the most remarkable figures of the contemporary art after the year 2000 in the region of the former Czechoslovakia. His work and overall approach to art is rather untypical but at the same time they reflect the situation in the society and culture. The artist creates sophisticated concepts and projects presenting them as seemingly simple closed “Pieces of art”. He is often critical in his works and aggressively expresses his contempt of the art scene itself and its processes but with a light, humorous and playful undertone. One of the most fascinating elements of his creation is the seeming counterpoint of emphasis on huge, grandiose EGO connected with a Gesture in combination with disarming self-ironic humility. His ability to reveal dark sides of his soul or stumbles and throw them to the world regardless of consequences shift the author´s concepts to broader possibilities of perception of the reasons of his work. Viktor Frešo is interested in direct, efficient, visual tools. He prefers short interval between action and reaction and conditions of quick recognition of relations between the expressing “me“ and the indication “he“. Therefore the form of a brief slogan suits him. Whether he intervenes into public space or exhibits in galleries he takes care that an immediate creative action shows itself in the execution – a GESTURE. Another very typical aspect is the interference into the world of media where without any respect he publicly presents his radical and often despising opinions of the society and art scene which might irritate and provoke a discussion about what is and what is not acceptable as contemporary art or just a self-centred affect of the artist. Recently among other things the author devotes himself to the art of sculpture and painting.
Academy of fine arts in Prague
2003 – 2005 New Media Studio, Academy of Fine Arts, Prague; Prof. Michael Bielicky
2001 – 2003 Painting Studio, Academy of Fine Arts, Prague; doc. Vladimír Skrepl
2000 – 2001 Flat Sculpture As Well, Academy of Fine Arts and Design, Bratislava; Prof. doc. Ján Hoffstädter
1999 – 2000 Sculpture Studio, Academy of Fine Arts and Design, Bratislava; Prof. Jozef Jankovič