The entire world of the artist’s works is built only with contours. If we study the oeuvre, we can observe how the shapes are born, how the artist balances between a one-dimensional line and a two-dimensional figure. The drawings are often left unfinished, but the presence of those few lines is enough to “see” the rest. The artist creates tension between what is already a shape and what isn’t, leaves some of his drawings undefined. He makes us feel that something is about to happen. Intrigued, we watch closely, wait for it to materialize. It’s as if the transmission of impressions was suddenly disrupted. Because, if there is still no shape, what else is there? An elusive impression? A trace of a decision taken back? A moment?
In their fragility Tarkawian’s figures resemble the ones from Matisse’s cut-outs. What is different about them, is that they have their individual characters. Torsos without legs seem to hover in the air, levitate against the undefined background. The space invades the half-open outline of a face, a torso or the whole figure and turn the plain sheet of paper into a frameless background. The space that is focused on the figure opens up, and, very often, doesn’t reach its limits. (…)
On the basis of the archives of the Biała Gallery, Mariusz Tarkawian drew the works exhibited at Biała in the 25 years of its history.