Balint Zsako Exhibition
By Elli Davis, March 12, 2013
Gladstone Hotel by Michelle Tribe
- Date: March 7–April 28
- Exhibition Hours: 12:00 AM–5:00 PM
- Location: 1214 Queen Street West — Gladstone Hotel, 3rd Floor Gallery
Selected works by Balint Zsako will be showcased on the third floor of the Gladstone Hotel throughout March and April. In most of his pieces, Zsako uses figurative painting to separate the diversity of elements of contemporary art.
Balint Zsako is a Toronto-based artist who was born in Budapest, Hungary, in 1979 and immigrated to Canada with his family in 1988. Since graduating with a BA in Fine Arts from Ryerson University in Toronto, he has had numerous international exhibitions and received several awards, such as du Maurier Arts Council's emerging artist grant and the Ontario Arts Council Emerging Artist Grant in 2005, and he was also shortlisted for the Untitled Art Awards in the Emerging Artist Category in 2004. His works have been featured in various magazines, including The New Yorker Magazine, Harper's Magazine, The Walrus Magazine, Poetry Magazine, and The New York Times Magazine.
Zsako uses diverse techniques ranging from conceiving the works as performance art recorded using Indian miniatures, land art characterized by medieval illumination, conceptual art presented by figures on a Greek vase, and installation art transcribed into Egyptian hieroglyphs. The core of these works starts with copying the posture of a figure from a photo or a classical painting. Next, he determines the direction of the narrative — whether that is a minimalist construction of microphones and light bulbs, a flock of birds, or a vascular system that transforms into the roots of a flowering plant. Much of the narrative elements in Zsako's paintings and drawings evince subject matter like bodily functions, human interactions, sex, and death. These topics are moderated by strict considerations of geometric and colour relationships.