The genesis of Pener’s new wall in Olsztyn, Poland goes back a year ago. He and Krzysztof Dąbkowski, who is the director of the Municipal Public Library of Olsztyn, agreed on the idea that the project should reflect the literary tradition of Warmia and Mazury, the Polish region in which Olsztyn is located.
Says Pener, “Specifically intertwined with the notion of “Atlantis of the North”, the author of which is the poet and writer Kazimierz Brakoniecki. I am very open to this type of synergistic projects that can significantly encourage reflection on our identity. As a creator and artist, I wanted to create something more than just an illustration for a literary text”.
The artist was inspired not just by the text of “Atlantis of the North” but also by the shape of the building, its location and the spatial context.
25 years in the game, Pener routinely lets his mind travel to encompass possibilities, then channels them abstractly through a series of echoing geometric forms with aerosol and brush. Here in his hometown of Olsztyn, Poland, he says he imagined the possibilities that young minds inside an elementary school could contemplate.
While painting this new “Mirror Land,” he was in a land of mirrors psychologically. He says he prefers to explore the “possible tension between our subconscious and conscious abilities that oscillate between reality and illusion.”
That’s a lot for kids to vocalize, granted, but he says he still engaged them when they watched and asked questions.
“Those were wonderful moments to hear them trying to solve what the wall depicts and hides,” he says.