Pluta’s studio practice embraces photography as a way of interpreting and re-conceptualising the function that images have in the present. Negotiating the possibilities of how material forms come together, she draws largely on finding, fragmenting, translating and reconfiguring things that are both photographed and found. Conceptually anchored in the effects of globalisation and Pluta’s own personal experience as a migrant to Australia, her creative pursuit seeks to articulate a fluid mode of moving through, and being in, the world. These ideas have led her to using a discursive photographic vocabulary as a purveyor of temporality, mutability and the impermanence of places. Pluta mediates on images with all their potential connections all at once, questioning how things from one place fit into another and speaking to experiences of place in the face of our changing environmental and societal condition.
“Pluta’s permanence as an artist arises in part from her two-decade persistence in experimentation with the form: photography. While she also employs sculpture, sound, installation and film in her work, her rule breaking with photography makes hers an ever-evolving language, as she wrestles with the visual articulation of tensions between diametrically opposed elements.” - Ineke Dane, Art Collector #93 Jul-Sept 2020, p157
Izabela Pluta was awarded the Perimeter Small Book Prize which led to her debut artist book, Figures of Slippage and Oscillation, being released by Perimeter in 2019. In the same year, Pluta was commissioned to create a significant new work, Apparent Distance, by the Art Gallery of New South Wales for The National 2019: new Australian art; an installation that formed an undulating image plane across the AGNSW’s Entrance Court requiring viewers to navigate its shifting terrain through the complexity of the photographic elements. In 2018, Pluta was the inaugural artist for the Marrgu Residency at Durrmu Arts Aboriginal Corporation in Peppimenarti. In 2018, she also presented new work at The Australian Centre for Photography, Sydney; and in Form N-X00 at the US Pavilion at the Biennale Architettura, Venice, Italy (in collaboration with Other Architects). She has also been the recipient of various awards and fellowships including the Qantas Foundation Encouragement of Australian Contemporary Art Award (2009), The Ian Potter Cultural Trust Grant (2008) and The Freedman Traveling Arts Scholarship (2007).
Pluta has held solo exhibitions at Artspace Ideas Platform, Sydney (2017), The Glasshouse Regional Gallery, Port Macquarie (2019); UTS Gallery, Sydney (2014); Gippsland Art Gallery, Sale (2012); Monash Gallery of Art, Melbourne (2011); 24 HR Art, Darwin (2010) and The Perth Institute of Contemporary Arts (2009). Notable group exhibitions include Civilization: the way we live now, The National Gallery of Victoria (2019); Watching the clouds pass the moon, MAC Lake Macquarie (2016); Timelapse, Gippsland Art Gallery, Sale (2016); Through the lens, Horsham Regional Gallery (2014); and Foreplay, Plimsoll Gallery, Hobart (2012). Pluta has undertaken national residencies including at International Art Space (IASKA) Kellerberrin, as well as international residencies in Tokyo, Barcelona, Paris, Belfast and Beijing.
Her first European solo exhibition, Variable depth, shallow water, is planned to take place in 2021 at Spazju Kreattiv, Malta’s National Centre for Creativity in Valetta. A selection of cyanotypes that comprise Blue spectrum and descent will be featured alongside an experimental text by Pluta in HØH JOURNAL’s inaugural issue, Disrupt - a new platform for contemporary art and literature in late 2020.
Izabela is a finalist in the 2020 Bowness Photography Prize opening at the Monash Gallery of Art in October, and has also been selected into the invitational acquisitive award, 15 Artists, at the Redcliffe Art Gallery, Queensland in November.