Veronika Pausova: Playing the Organs

1 April - 8 May 2021

The Sunday Painter is pleased to announce a solo exhibition by Czech born Canada based artist Veronika Pausova. 


Pausova’s paintings create semi-abstract spaces where the interchange between the physical and cognitive plays out. The compositions have a diagrammatic quality that hints of some kind of order, or a potential site for an action to take place. Within the works hands and ears interact with the structural plains of the paintings. Although they are disembodied there is no sense of gore here, nor do we question the whereabouts of their original owner (they are in fact the artist’s). Instead Pausova deploys them more as isolated ideas, connected not to a personality but an action. In this context they exist to serve a mechanical purpose; nudging, listening, grabbing. 


In the work Partly Cloudy we find the hands are occupied adjusting a window blind. They have been rendered and reproduced with exactly the same grip at different points along the slats. There is an obsessive/anxious energy here and when you read it as the same hand at different points in time we enter a Groundhog Day situation; the routine becomes drawn out, infinite, but also static in its confines. The smallest painting in the show Left from Right is comprised of two hands which are again rendered with exactly the same posture. In isolation we might read the hand at the bottom edge as being connected to a body that has simply been left out of shot, however this assumption is quickly undone causing a double-take, when we see the same hand is rendered above, cropped from the wrist.


In other paintings moths, shells and flies also appear to us as placeholders and even the shadows they cast seem to be functioning as physical supports, holding together an otherwise purely cognitive space. Like the body parts, they are painted with a molecular detail that hover in a transient space that is implied through her much less restrained and more textured application of paint. Our sense of perspective, scale, and the perception of interior and exterior, naturally shifts and slips from one to the other in a subtly disorientating way.


The two shells floating in the painting Untitled (listening shells) have a resemblance to the ears featured and repeated in the larger work Playing the Organs. This resemblance is confirmed when up close we see a metamorphosis has indeed taken place; the contours of an ear clearly defined beneath the painted surface. Pausova in fact began each work within the show without a final design in mind; instead the individual forms and compositions evolve and become determined during the process of the underpainting, whereby the ethereal plains of the paintings set the stage and allow the more diagrammatic ideas to sprout. 



Veronika Pausova was born in 1987 in Prague, Czech Republic. She currently lives and works in Toronto, Canada. Recent solo and two person exhibitions include Esker Foundation, Calgary, Canada (2021, forthcoming); Bradley Ertaskiran, Montreal, Canada (2021, forthcoming); A to C, Simone Subal Gallery, New York (2019); Busy Bodies, with Frances Adair Mckenzie, Parisian Laundry, Montréal (2018); drawing the curtain, Hunt Kastner, Prague (2018); Age me a heavy twig, with Carl Marin, Franz Kaka, Toronto (2018); Be Frictionless Latecomer, Simone Subal Gallery, New York (2017); Forest House, Tatjana Pieters, Ghent, Belgium (2017); Elope By Mere Thread, Paramo Galeria, Guadalajara, Mexico (2016); Chests in the Current, Motel, Brooklyn, New York (2016); and Tasting the Waters, SARDINE, Brooklyn, New York (2015). Select group shows include MY C ART OGRAPHY. The Erling Kagge Collection, Santander Art Gallery, Madrid, Spain (2020); If I have a body, Remai Modern, Saskatoon, Saskatchewan (2019); On Anxiety, Cleve Carney Gallery, Chicago, Illinois (2018); An Assembly of Shapes, Oakville Galleries, Oakville, Ontario (2018); Line and Verse, Andrehn-Schiptjenko, Stockholm (2018); RBC 2017, National Gallery of Canada, Ottawa, Ontario (2017); Sojourner Truth Parsons, Sean Steadman, Veronika Pausova, 11R, New York, NY (2017); You are Here, Peana Projects, Monterrey, Mexico (2017); Seek Professional Help, Bureau, New York, NY (2016); and Gesture Play, Simone Subal, New York, NY (2016).