Joya: AiR / Silvia Krupinska / Slovakia

photo Simon Beckmann

photo Simon Beckmann


“I've flown to Joya: AiR from London with an open mind. I wanted to relax, refresh and escape from my city life. Having done an art residency at Walthamstow Wetlands in London which stores around 40% of the water that will arrive in peoples' taps after cleaning I wondered, what the landscape could be like in a desert environment? I wanted to know how the land and its' habitat is affected by the driest spells of Andalusien summer. The next day I arrived the temperature has climbed to the 40 degrees celsius! I'd never been in such heat before (apart from the dry sauna).

During my three weeks of research I indulged in lots of sunrise and sunset walks, birdwatching, insect watching (and escaping from if I were chased by a fly), goat walking, rock formations scanning, barranco exploring, mostly avoiding the deep midday heat, fossil hunting and looking for marks of any other animals left behind. Most of my curiosities were tickled by learning about the alpine desert landscape I was set deeply within. I'm a sculptor. I had to bring some of this sun-scorched landscape with me indoors to an art studio. Canvas bags full of soil and clay in three different colours were so exciting to work with and desperately heavy to carry in. Full of minerals and colour, the soil helped me to produce dozens of prints on paper. Another line of inquiry in my research had taken a turn by chance. When I planted linseeds as an experiment, something has happened. Hundreds of forest ants queued up for the seeds and have been simply taking them away down their hole! Leaving the mud marks behind as they were pulling the seeds, they produced delicate drawings.

I'm back now in London. I can reflect back at my summer and it's clear to me, this art residency not only has given me a chance to play without any guilt or time constraint but also has changed my aesthetic sensibilities. I see the world differently. I need the white rocky walls or sun-bleached sedimentary rock, I need more of the green, and I need more clarity and more open space. In my mind and in my life, however dramatic this may sound. Thank you, Joya, so much for having me there and sharing with me your world. Thanks a million!

Silvia Krupinska

Silvia Krupinska is a London-based sculptor of Slovak origin. She moved to London in 1999, studied Fine Art at Chelsea School of Art and Design, UAL (grad. 2006) and took an MA Art and Science at Central Saint Martins College, UAL (grad. 2016). 
She has exhibited internationally, including in an EU-Art-Network exhibition in Palazzo Albrizzi, The Venice Biennale 2009 and I've also participated in a number of shows and art symposiums in Austria, Germany, Azerbaijan and Slovakia. 

Simon Beckmann