Plan X is proud to present “Superself,” the first Italian solo exhibition by the Polish artist Magda Kirk, opening on the 29th of November, 2023 at the gallery’s Milan location.
Born in 1990, Magda Kirk is an alumnus of the Academy of Fine Arts in Gdańsk, Poland, where she honed her artistic vision and gradua- ted in 2015. Her work, deeply rooted in the explo- ration of body image, offers subjective impres- sions that delve into the intricacies of identity, self-esteem, and the quest for self-expression.
“Superself” is a provocative and insightful examination of how popular culture and its pan- theon of modern myths imprint themselves onto the individual psyche. Kirk’s paintings draw from the deep well of media imagery, echoing the pro- found influence of comic book heroes, mythical deities, and pop culture icons that resonate wi- thin contemporary society. Kirk’s subjects, depi- cted as genderless figures, adopt poses remini- scent of the dynamism and vitality of superhero comics. These figures, etched against a back- drop of pop culture iconography, serve as a me- taphor for the internal battle between personal identity and the heroic archetypes that pervade our collective consciousness.
With this new series of paintings Kirk’s challenges the observer to reflect on the omni- presence of cultural expectations and the quest for individuality. The figures in her paintings, de- void of specific gender, represent a universal canvas, embodying the struggle for self-defini- tion in a world saturated with media-driven ide- als. Her work captures the tension between the fantastical elements of the stories we admire and the reality of our own existence.
The artwork, rich with the visual language of tattoos, reflects the indelible mark of pop cul- ture narratives upon our self-conception. These ‘tattoos’—vivid, sprawling, and as personal as they are public—speak to the stories we adopt as our own and the ideals to which we aspire. Just as tattoos mark significant milestones, the pop culture narratives we embrace help to shape our personal identities and inform the way we navi- gate the world.
With “Superself,” Kirk not only celebrates the narrative tapestry woven from the threads of shared cultural myths but also underscores the human need for stories that amplify our experien- ce to the extraordinary. It’s a powerful reflection on how contemporary humans view their bodies and identities through the distorting lens of so- cietal expectations.