Miroslaw Balka

Foksal Gallery Foundation

With a,e,i,o,u, 1997, his most recent installation at Galeria Foksal, Miroslaw Balka once again combined a poetic sensibility with a minimalist vocabulary, endowing carefully chosen objects with potent symbolism rooted in memory and personal experience. Balka sealed the doorway to the gallery with a plaster wall, leaving only two oval holes, which he lined with dog-collars. The openings were located approximately a foot from the floor, forcing viewers who wanted to glance inside the gallery to get down on their knees.

One kneeled and peered through the holes, only to see a darkened space. A sense of inactivity inside the gallery was disturbed by the monotonous sound of barking played in a digital loop—a canine lament suggesting an invisible kennel crowded with animals. In the narrow corridor leading to the gallery, Balka placed shreds of another dog collar, like remnants of a beloved,

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