Bartosz Czarnecki

I rarely create paintings on the spur of the moment. Despite my sincerest efforts,

I have never been and never will be an impressionist; after all, I am too stale a piece of Polish bread to crack to become such a thing. That's why, when for the first time I got really inspired by an impressionist moment, I was so surprised that, without thinking (this is what I used to do often), I started creating the series of The Smokers.

The prototype of this art series was one of the characters from "The X-Files" TV show. The serial smoker (Cancer Man, The Smoking Man, CSM) is an impenetrable, mysterious character kept in a literal and figurative shadow, always with his attribute, a burning cigarette. Grey skin shrouded in smoke, a man appeared like a Deus ex machina to thwart the protagonists' plans. This series is framed by the characteristics of all television sets of the 90s, accentuated by the quality of the displayed picture of that time, and altogether became for me a tarot card casually thrown in by the directors, which, if the said card ever existed, would represent something like the following:

The Smoker Card: an enigmatic figure, a grey eminence, an antagonist, the impunity of corporations, hidden agendas, pathologically destroying the surroundings and thus himself. Control, authority, and power.

The Smoker Card in reversed position: susceptibility, addiction, weakness, reluctance to make decisions, impotence.

Who is the person behind the cloud of cigarette smoke? As the author of The Smokers, I cannot claim the right to take away freedom and free interpretation; therefore, freedom of expression is beholden to the potential recipient. If I ever take ownership of your free expression, please pull the smoker's card out for me from the deck, in reversed position.


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