Radek Szlaga


Radek Szlaga (b. 1979) lives and works in Warsaw, Poland and Detroit, USA

After finishing his studies at Academy of Fine Arts in Poznan, Poland and receiving recognition for controversy surrounding his work ‘Bad Drawings,’ Szlaga earned consideration as one of the most sophisticated and potent Polish painters of his generation.

His work takes an exploratory and experimental approach to both American and Eastern European visual cultures, as well as his own subconscious. Central to his work is an investigation of identity, and the boundary between its reality and simulation. His practice relies on both historical research and an introspective mining on his own memories and dreams.

Szlaga describes his painterly approach as “a way of thinking” implying a constant re-thinking and “peeling off” of layers of tradition and history through the selective recycling of archived and found imagery, which he often literally “cuts and pastes” transferring fragments of one canvas onto another. His subtle manipulations of second hand and often iconic images, stemming from everything between rap culture and colonialism, address questions of public archives, memory and what it means to paint in this digital age.

Selected solo exhibitions include: Centre for Contemporary Art Ujazdowski Castle, Warsaw, Foksal Gallery, Warsaw, Harlan Levey Projets, Brussels, Belgium, Laure Roynette Gallery, Paris, France, Trinosophes, Detroit , US, West Gallery, the Haag, Netherlands, Alexander Ochs Gallery Berlin, Germany and Beijing, China, Leto Gallery, Warsaw, Poland .

Selected group exhibitions include: Performa 13, New York, US, National Art Museum of China, Beijing, China, Centre for Contemporary Art Ujazdowski Castle, Warsaw, Poland, Zachęta National Gallery, Warsaw, Poland, Contemporary Art Centre, Vilnius, Lithuania, Waterside Contemporary, London, UK.

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Higher Pedagogical School, Zielona Góra, Poland

Academy of Fine Arts, Poznañ, Poland

Solo Exhibitions

Puritan, Pioneer Works, New York, US
All The Brutes, Harlan Levey Project, Brussels, BE
All the Brutes, LETO, Warsaw, PL
The Heart, Galerie Laure Roynette, Paris, FR

Milenium, Czytelnia Sztuki, Gliwice, PL

Limited Dictionary, Trinosophes, Detroit, US

Freedom Club, CCA Ujazdowski Castle, Warsaw, PL

Freedom Club, West Gallery Den Haag, The Hague, NL
Dreams/Icons, Arsenal Gallery, Bialystok, PL

The End, Aleksander Ochs Gallery, Berlin DE 
The Way, LETO Gallery, Warszawa PL 
Fake Fauna, Arsenal Municipal Gallery, Poznan PL 
Iconoclasm, White Space, Pekin CN 
The Way, National Museum in Szczecin, Szczecin PL

The Calendar 2010, LETO Gallery, Warszawa PL
Radek Szlaga, Short I, Alexander Ochs Gallery, Berlin DE

Atlantis, LETO, Warsaw, PL

Atlantis, Arsenal Municipal Gallery, Poznan, PL
History and geography, Zderzak Gallery, Krakow, PL

Selected Exhibitions

this one is smaller than this one, Galerist, Istanbul, TR
DE - MO - CRA - CY, Galeria Labirynt, Lublin, PL
The Travellers, Zachęta - National Gallery of Art, Warsaw, PL
All the Brutes, Fresh Paint, Tel Aviv, IL
Out of Limits, artgeneve 2016, Geneva, CH
this one is smaller than this one, Postmasters Gallery, New York, US

State of Life, Polish Contemporary Art Within a Global Circumstance, National Art Museum of China, Beijing, CN
Sammlung Dr Werner Jerke. Eine Auswahl, Atlas Sztuki, Łódź, PL
WY 3208G, Warsaw, PL
Cannibalism? On Appropriation in Art, Zachęta - National Gallery of Art, Warsaw, PL

Show with a Lovely Title, Leto Gallery, Warsaw, PL
Stendhal Syndrome, Zona Sztuki Aktualnej, Szczecin, PL
Hate Speech. I Exclude the Exclusion, Jewish Historical Institute, Warsaw, PL
Primary Images, ArtBrussels 2014, Brussels, BE

Tribute to Errors and Leftovers, Performa 13, New York, US
BRITISH BRITISH POLISH POLISH, Center of Contemporary Art Ujazdowski Castle, Warsaw, PL
Migrations | Creations, Emigration Museum, Tricity, PL
A Few Practical Ways to Prolong One's Life, Zachęta - National Gallery of Art, Warsaw, PL

Freedom Club – Trailer, Foksal Gallery, Warsaw, PL
Arrière-garde, Temporary Gallery Cologne, Kolonia, DE
Respect paper, Piktogram/BLA, Warsaw, PL
Transatlantic, Frieze Art Fair, New York, US
Coming soon, Temporary Gallery Cologne, DE
Wat doet u daar?, Nieuwe Vide, Haarlem, NL

They don’t know why, but they keep doing it, waterside contemporary, London UK
Sweatboxing II, LETO gallery, Warszawa, PL
Oysz… painters, Alexander Ochs Galerie, Berlin, DE 
Galeria Blanca Soto, Madrit, ES
New Wave, BWA Bydgoszcz, PL


WHERE TO GO? Notes on Transformation after 1989, Rotor association for contemporary art, Graz
Le coeur est un chasseur solitaire, Gare Sauveur, Festival LILLE 3000 FR

Revaluations, Austrian Cultural Forum, Warsaw, PL
Establishment, CCA Ujazdowski Castle, Warsaw, PL

Closeness, LETO Gallery, Warsaw, PL
Squares, POSK Gallery, London, UK

Awards, Grants, and Residencies

Residency Unlimited, New York
Penthouse Art Space Residency, Brussels

Polityka’s Passport nominee

Kompas Młodej Sztuki, 1st Prize for emerging Polish artist 
ISCP Residency, New York

TVP KULTURA Prize for the artistic group Penerstwo

Residency at the White Space, Beijing, China

Scholarship holder of the Ministry of Culture and National Heritage
”Polska The Times” Prize for Young Artists

City of Poznan artistic scholarship

All the Brutes