Hubert Czerepok

Born in 1973 in Słubice. A graduate of the Kenar Art School in Zakopane and the Academy of Fine Arts in Poznań, where he studied in the workshops of Izabela Gustowska and Jan Berdyszak. The artist completed postgraduate studies at the Jan van Eyck Academie in Maastricht, Netherlands (2002– 2003), and at the Higher Institute for Fine Arts in Antwerp, Belgium. Between 2006 and 2013, Czerepok worked as an assistant professor, and later associate professor, at the Video Art Studio of the University of Fine Arts in Poznań. He is currently a professor at the Faculty of Painting and New Media of the Academy of Fine Arts in Szczecin. He participated in many exhibitions in Poland and abroad. In the artistic duo Magisters (with Zbyszek Rogalski), he produced absurd photographs and movies. In cooperation with Sebastian Mendez, he created the strategy game Survivors of the White Cube, a simulation of the art world. Czerepok’s multifaceted oeuvre escapes unambiguous typecasting. His actions demonstrate the functioning of images in visual culture, and his strategy of mystification enables the defusion of the traditional mechanism of perception.

Hubert Czerepok, PL/EU [GL], installation, 2017, photo by Wojciech Pacewicz

Czerepok decided to use one of the most disliked elements of border-crossing, that is the frontier barrier, as his artistic material. He collected several barriers in characteristic red and white colours which he then formed in the shape of Poland’s borders with particular European countries: Germany, Czech Republic, Slovakia and Lithuania at the Lublin part of the exhibition, and the Russian, Belarussian and Ukrainian at the Bialystok part. Yet they do not constitute any aestheticized construction, but lie in an unidentified heap. Lublin got the more glamorous western borders, and Bialystok the non-EU, non-Schengen eastern ones, where you wait for hours and get strictly controlled. As we know, the integrity of the current shape of EU and the maintaining of Schengen is under question. We may face a possibility of Polexit, if our reactionary authorities keep their anti-European course. Czerepok meditates over the different way we treat the West and East and Poland’s strange position between them, at once privileged and shaky, which can fall down like a heap of barrier rubble.

Hubert Czerepok, PL/NONEU [GA], installation, 2017, photo by Kacper Gorysz