Georges Mazilu – L’homme à l’oiseau
Dimensions: 20.5 x 23.5″ framed / 15 x 18″ unframed
Medium: acrylic on linen
In his acrylic on linen work, Romanian artist Mazilu juxtaposes his characteristically muted color palette with brighter tones, located in what appears to be rising water in the foreground of the work and in the bird. While the figure displays many recognizably human characteristics, his joints appear composed of mechanics, giving rise to questions over the effect the water will have on his capacity to function.
While Georges Mazilu’s oeuvre often focuses on the human form—despite his characters’ unusual proportions and physical compositions—his works begin as loose abstractions that gain recognizability through process. Mazilu describes his paintings as mapping the transition from unconscious to conscious processing and often navigate the tension between his ‘will’ and ‘possibilities’. Mazilu was born in Romania and quickly developed an affinity for producing art, eventually pursuing formal training at the prestigious Grigorescu Institute of Fine Arts. After following what might be considered a classical education, Mazilu’s work began to develop a contemporary edge as it encountered the swell of modern art. Mazilu’s works often combine realism with the absurd and touch on the styles of canonical surrealist artists like Hieronymus Bosch or Salvador Dali. Mazilu’s paintings employ muted color palettes and simple backgrounds, drawing viewers’ attention to his carefully rendered characters posing in formal portraiture style or displaying less-than-human behavior.
By Keira Seidenberg, Art History/Gender Studies student, McGill University