Michael Kukla abstracts nature and time’s effect on natural elements using Minimalistic techniques and empirical facts. He renders an organic ethos from static medium by concentrating on cellular-level figuration and form; by building upon and reworking two-dimensional pieces, and; by subtracting from three-dimensional façade. Admittedly, his works hardly look touched by the hand of man, more by the hand of nature.
A celebrated sculptor, Kukla carves at natural medium (slate, marble, plywood slabs) to form a sculpture in the round as well as see-through, exposing several layers beneath the surface. Purity exudes from marble work, in which Kukla mimics the patterns found in the stone to achieve realistic surfaces.
With gouache on paper and painting, Kukla plays with negative and positive space by building thick layers of monochromatic, repetitive shapes, which he has borrowed from cellular structure. Heavy-handled pictorial space echoes the ethereal cycles found in biological creation. Kukla interlocks growth and decline by interweaving dark amoebic lines with silver-hued highlights.
Kukla (born in Prague, Czech Republic) lives and works in New York City and shows in numerous international galleries. Kukla moved to the United States in 1971. Later, Czech TV featured him as the first American artist to exhibit in Ostrava, Czechoslovakia since the end of World War II. In 1987, he received a BFA in Painting from Castleton State College, Castleton, VT; in 1992 he studied sculpture at Hochshule der Kuenste in Berlin, Germany. Also in 1992, Kukla designed marble pedestals for the full-line of Apple computers.
Contact Kukla at his website.
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