July 16, 2007 at 10:00 am (look)

It’s sort of embarrassing, but I don’t know how to pronounce the name of one of my favorite artists in Sacramento. Try for yourself: Zbigniew Kozikowski. He’s from Poland, and even though in my mind Poland is dominantly gray and sort of depressing (in school I only ever learned about Poland in the context of WWII), Kozikowski’s brilliant with color. He uses a lot of bright orange, magenta and purple that, instead of seeming garish, makes everything seem drenched in a sunset. He also layers colors a lot, and sometimes creates actual layers in his paintings by collaging newspaper onto the canvas.

Unfortunately, I can’t find a ton of his work online to post. (UPDATE: Turns out an extensive google search fails to bring up his homepage, which I just found because I found his business card–can’t be good for publicity.) I’m especially disappointed that there are no umbrella pictures–for years he has painted umbrellas (very rarely accompanied by people) in semi-abstract cityscapes (UPDATE: Check them out here). A cluster of umbrellas can be surprisingly beautiful–all the curves, and the way they suggest figures while remaining very clearly objects. My mom liked his work before I knew who he was but could never remember his name, and in my family we still call him “the umbrella guy.”






I have to say, that I don’t actually love any of the paintings above. You can still see, though, how Kozikowski’s colors keep even a super played-out subject (the capitol building) feeling fresh. They also make me want orange juice. Yum.


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