Anno Domini // the second coming of Art & Design presents:
Denis Korkh (b. 1986, Ukraine) is a painter of philosophies. His imagery holds cryptic keys to personal truths that viewers may find fantastical, surreal or disturbing. In this way, he is a perfect translator of the brilliant short stories encapsulated in "Labyrinths" by Jorge Luis Borges.
Korkh’s In Borges’ Labyrinths paintings are a visual feast true to the magicalrealism of Borges’ tales; so much so that Borges’ words are not replaced by these representations, they have moved from the imagined into a tangible reality by way of Korkh’s attention and expression of them. ~ Anno Domini
Here, I visit Labyrinths by Jorge Luis Borges. I am happy to map a few passages and share them through these paintings. The quality of my attention to his work then changes from a reader to its denizen. I am possessed by it. I come to believe there is only one author, infinite philosophies, perfect memory, and I find an object of obsession impossible to lose. I am the other Asterion, I follow The Immortal and his horse, I am imagined and dismissed by a wizard at the ruins, and live in a depthless library which certainly has every book. In my cell, I paint an infinite tiger.
I was born in Dnipropetrovsk, Ukraine in 1986. There, I was instilled with many of my core values and sensibilities. In 1997, my family moved to Cleveland, Ohio. In 2004, I moved to San Francisco; there, on occasion I would lose many of my values and sensibilities. In 2011, I came to San Jose and have resided here since.
Up until that time; I made a painting here and there– less than a handful in all. Then, overnight, in November 2013, I became obsessed; I painted one, and then again the next day, and then, every free minute for a long time after. I had made just over a hundred paintings in that first year. I knew for certain only that I loved the ritual and that there was meaning. That year, I discovered Anno Domini and inside I found life-time works. On these walls were decades of someone's silent contemplation– unconcerned and honest. I knew then that in a few decades I will produce work that will also have this quietude which will be less a product of my effort and more of time and intimacy.
I am still very short of this decade but in no rush to quietude. Today, my work is perhaps neurotic but not at all concerned – it wanders freely around disparate concepts and techniques. My work now is to amplify ideas I find beautiful–Borges' Labyrinths is a bottomless cache for me. ~Denis Korkh