As the second millennium draws to a close, we continue to wrestle with ageless questions such as, What is art? How can art be vital and valid? And perhaps the most treacherous and nihilistic question of all, "Why make art?"
Despite the march of time, art does not progress linearly. Yet, once created it takes its place in time. It becomes part of time. Part of history. It becomes a glyph - a commentary on the age. Simply put, art is part of its historical context. And the artist's vision a commentary.
In the post-Pop era, the image holds rule over meaning (content). This superficial "rendering" reveals the underlying cynicism over the loss of the avant-garde or subversive aesthetic.
It is in this context that Robert Mirek creates images devoid of cynicism and sentimentality while possessing beauty and profundity.
Entry into Mirek's world - and his worldview - is two-fold. One is by way of color and surface. The second through the visual and tactile.
His is a highly personal worldview. Indeed, the small dimensions of his objects invite comparison to medieval devotional objects carried by travelers such as small ivory diptychs or triptychs.
Mirek's sensuous and physical application of paint reveals the influence of Clyfford Still and Philip Guston. The colors are those of the earth and sky.The shapes and the relation of surface to edge address the classical concerns for color, form, space and rhythm. They are at once ambiguous and suggestive while avoiding the narrative and illustrative.
Mirek has overcome mere visual artifice to achieve a single-minded focus. He and vitality that attests to life beneath the surface. His work is a meditation and a confrontation between the selves and a coming to terms. An acknowledgement of a dialogue that transcends to the universal and ultimately exists outside time.
- Robert Edwards, December, 1998