Stephen Heywood and Andrew Kozlowski
In considering this exhibition the artists Stephen Heywood and Andrew Kozlowski brought their work together from a mutual interest in how their pieces play with architecture, history, and loss. Kozlowski’s works use the ideas of blueprints to sketch out impossible structures made from the remnants of human history, and the possible narratives invented through the pairing of seemingly random images on a page. Through their form and coloring Heywood’s vessels often refer to structures that have seen their use diminished; their history passed by.
Both utilize a kind of approximation in their work. Kozlowski employs cartooning, a kind of reductive drawing that helps emphasize and heighten the most important parts of the objects depicted. Amplification through simplification. Heywood uses the repetition of forms, silos, cooling towers, factories. Both artists select specific references but avoid exact representations. Heywood astutely abstracts his ceramics, picking out not just the details of ladders or infographics, but the subtleness of form. The perfect silhouette suggests a boxy warehouse found in an industrial park; the taper of a pot becomes a silo on the horizon. Kozlowski presents objects that are at once recognizable and span a range from high to low, from beer cans and building debris, to ancient urns and human remains. The trick is how they collapse together in these pictures, asking the viewer to reckon with the how and why these objects found themselves tossed together.
Color too plays a role across the artists’ work. Bright unnatural saturated pinks, oranges, blues, and greens, distinctly man-made colors flood Kozlowski’s works on paper. Not found in nature, they give off warning signs, glow with radioactivity, but also have a charm of sugary sweet candy. Heywood’s ceramics are instantly attractive by blasts of brown and orange from the atmospheric firing techniques he employs. Combined with his forms they suggest rust and patina, age through exposure and use. The matte surfaces absorb light and when held have a sandy, dry touch. These effects might call to mind old or disused items, or perhaps utilitarian objects, whose function isn’t dependent at all on surface.
In this exhibition artists Stephen Heywood and Andrew Kozlowski wanted to bring together their seemingly disparate looking works in order to provide a platform for the viewer to recognize their approaches to architecture, objects, and history. The idea of intersection, the crossing of paths, is important here. Bringing these bodies of works together serves the purpose to heighten the similarities in each artist’s approach to the story of human interaction with objects and environments and collapse the differences in their appearance. Independently each artist has taken a unique path, but together their work forms a more complete picture of how they see the world.