The work of Michal Škoda, while unusually compact, is not exhausted by the apparent variations of modernist principles of the exploration of form. Škoda critiques these principles by expanding the space of the media on which he concentrates. Geometry in painting, drawing or installations express the conflict of rules which the artist discovers in observed reality, most often within an architectural environment. He does not restrict himself to copying its external style, but attempts to uncover its construction and free it of sediments. In this way he shows a system which can no longer be used and therefore is breaking away, becoming empty. At the Brussels Biennale (2008) the work comprised only a frame, the overarching levels of unseen details. The grey wall created the basis thanks to which it was possible to distinguish the work from the wall, but covered the putative original contents of the frame which it displayed.
The backdrop of Škoda’s art needs no deciphering, since the artist anticipates the viewer’s curiosity: the movement of detection takes place in relation to the observed. Not even in this kind of project, which is to a certain extent a journal (the exhibition Records in the Photography Gallery, 2010), is the viewer the person who inspects the artistic motives. Škoda is interested in more abstract principles which include the situation of viewing itself. The collages exhibited here were a continuation of his interest in the medium of the book or the contexts of words without written discourse: capturing their structure, the organisation which lost the primary information. He presented this line for instance in the Šternberk Gallery at the exhibition Works on Paper (2005).
Despite the austerity and precision of depiction in his works, the artist evokes feelings of a tireless examination and the need to find fragments of the rules of society in which we live. Every one of his works establishes a relationship-based situation, which the artist acquires from our external conditions. He reduces the situation to the purest geometrical forms. Through their similarity to furniture, to a book, to a building facade or ground plan he illustrates the perspective of his investigation. The installations in the Vernon Gallery (2008) and in Basel (2009) brought into the interior of the gallery a general pattern which might be reminiscent of parts of building exteriors. It was not important to make out the concrete models, but to perceive the lack of the connecting points which we expect on the basis of our civilised collective experience. The artist often adds an element to the created whole (which can also be its absence), which cleanly but nevertheless parasitically squeezes into the existing grid. This takes place either inside the installation itself or as a consequence of the context in which the work is exhibited. Škoda created the most open connection with the environment at the Prague Biennale (2009), where the iron construction of the windows of a former factory was reflected in a metal geometrical object. He opted for a similar approach in the project Billboard Prague (2008), in which he pasted a black and white composition on a space for billboards near highways. This could be taken as a conflict of two carriageways, the corners of a junction, or a special transport sign.
In the Wannieck Gallery, Brno, in 2007 he undertook a joint project with Jan Šerých entitled Icing (Forbidden Release). The artists worked with the symmetrical division of the surface of pictures, whose final parameters were created by overlapping six designs by Michal Škoda and six by Jan Šerých. The resulting surfaces or patterns were executed in a black and white geometrical form favoured by both artists.
Public Art Projects:
2008 EMERGING WOR(L)DS / Billboard text Art / - Prague
2004 OPEN BOOK – Hünfeld /D/