Strange Flowers, illustrations by Olaf Hajek
"Strange Flowers, Hajek’s most recent body of work is a hypnotic tangle of botanical forms and colour. Rendered in acrylic on wood panels, Hajek uses distressed and exquisitely fine mark-making to create a rich surface patina. Woven into the fabric of the work the image of the flower is used as a seductive yet contradictory metaphor for fertility, poison, growth and decay.
Much like the Dutch painters of the 16–18th century his work looks at the brevity of life through capturing the vital essence of living forms and the continuing struggle for life where beauty is made more precious because of its transience. Through juxtaposing the human figure with his incandescent kaleidoscope of flora and fauna Hajek looks at humanities fragile relationship with nature and its cycles of birth and death.”