Rob Mazurek

Rob Mazurek was born in Jersey City, New Jersey, in 1965.  He is a respected figure in the International Creative Music and Avant-Jazz Scenes. Mazurek spent much of his creative life in Chicago and then Brazil.
He currently lives and works in Marfa, TX. Rob is a multidisciplinary artist/abstractivist, with a focus on electro-acoustic composition, improvisation, performance, painting, sculpture, video, film and installation. His works often deal with obscured architectures.
Rob Mazurek is a multidisciplinary artist focusing on the projection of resonant structures that have the capacity to shape various perceptions of feeling.
Mazurek is an artist whose work defies simple categorization. He has exhibited his painting, print, sculpture, film, video, and sound installations internationally since 2002. His multi-media projects have been supported by major arts institutions including: the Graham Foundation for Advanced Studies in the Fine Arts (Chicago, IL), Abbaye Royale de Fontevraud (Fontevraud, France), Helen Coburn Meier and Tim Meier Foundation (Chicago, IL), New Music USA (New York, NY), The Andy Warhol Museum, (Pittsburgh, PA), and the Robert D. Bielecki Foundation (New York, NY), among others. His work has been featured in The Wire (UK), the New York Times, Los Angeles Times, Chicago Tribune, Glasstire, and Chromatic: The Crossroads of Color and Music.
Mazurek has maintained a serious visual arts practice for three decades. He is also a respected figure in the international creative music and avant-jazz scenes. His expansive vision and vast catalog of over 400 compositions and 75 recordings have kept him reshaping modern music’s cutting edge. In all disciplines, Mazurek’s work is prolific, focused, expansive, and evocative.
In 2020, Meccaniche della Meraviglia presented Cosmic Stacks, a solo show of sculpture and painting by Mazurek at  Fondazione Vittorio Leonesio, in Brescia, Italy.  Mazurek also participated in a group show at Manifattura Tabacchi, in Florence, Italy,  where he presented A Wrinkle In Time Sets Concentric Circles Reeling, a multimedia work including video, photography, prints, sound, and a virtual performance.

In 2019, Mazurek completed a residency and corresponding solo exhibition, Resonant Stacks, which included sculpture and painting, at MorettoCavour in Brescia, Italy. In July 2019, Marfa Book Company presented Mazurek’s Desert Encrypts: Volume 2, a multimedia performances utilizing new compositional forms in collaboration with musicians Jan St. Werner and Chad Taylor, and filmmaker, Rosa Barba, in Marfa, TX. His solo exhibition Extensions and Other Dimensions at Wrong in Marfa, TX included painting, sculpture, and prints.
In 2018, Harmonipan (Mexico City, Mexico) released a limited edition art book of Mazurek’s October 2015 through January 2016 solo show, Marfa Loops Shouts and Hollers, presented by Marfa Book Company. The book documents the exhibition of 39 original paintings and objects. It also includes 70 minutes of audio on 25 tracks composed by the artist. It features essays by John Corbett, Tiago Mesquita, and Tim Johnson. 
In August 2018, Mazurek premiered, Desert Encrypts, a new suite of compositions for quartet based on graphic, sculptural and notated scores. Mazurek will premiere Galactic Parables: Volume 2 at the 2018 Berlin Jazz Festival with his Exploding Star Orchestra.
Mazurek’s 2017 solo show, Constellation Scores, at URDLA Centre International Estampe & Livre (Villeurbanne, France) was featured by the 14th Biennale de Lyon’s FOCUS series. In 2016, Mazurek was awarded a grant from Chicago’s Graham Foundation for Advanced Studies in the Fine Arts for production of The Farnsworth Scores, a film made in collaboration with Lee Anne Schmitt at Mies van der Rohe’s iconic Farnsworth House. The Farnsworth Scores has screened at The Carnegie Museum of Art (Pittsburgh, PA); Avant Art Festival (Wroclaw and Warsaw, Poland); Crowley Theater (Marfa, TX), Festival Aural in (Mexico City, Mexico); Fronteira IV International Documentary and Experimental Film Festival (Goiania, Brazil), and Alabama Contemporary Art Center (Mobile, AL).

Spectral Buddha 1

Sound Garden

Some Other Time 

Cuts for Bill Dixon



Spectral Buddha 3

Rob Mazurek: Off the beaten path
by Gaetano Fiore e Andrea Petrai

Illuminating, hypnotic, stellar painting and music with oriental reminiscences that in music bring us back to the cosmic and surreal orchestrations of Sun Ra’s Arkestra (as well as in part to the more daring and complex ones of Ornette Coleman ) and in painting to the prolific chromatic harmonies of action painting and more.
Music/painting, pure synaesthesia offered by Rob Mazurek, a well-established sensorial practice that sees the materialization of his pictorial journey on many cover art of his records. In fact they speak the same language as what you listen to, as if to complete visually the intimate message of the sound.
Big size works by Mazurek like those he has recently made of extraordinary expressive power, that give us positive vibes. They tell us about unexplored worlds, fascinating visions animated by suggestive languages, as for the works dedicated to his great mentor Bill Dixon, in which codes, rock signs are deciphered and whose images bring out new energies full of light, compositions that unleash wonderfully free vital impulses.
Struck by a Rothko painting, Mazurek spent significant and precious time copying other things in order to learn, with the main aim of wanting to create something that could be honestly his and that came from his true self.
Painting, sculpture, music, construction of synthetic scales and chord structures: Rob Mazurek tries to find his own sound or his own painting or his own sculpting.
Yes, Mazurek wants to be original. “I don’t want to be a walking clone of something. And it’s not about getting noticed, it’s about being a force for beauty and good”.
Not by chance Mazurek likes science fiction exactly because he likes to speculate on what it might be. He does all that not just to create things, but because he’s trying to overcome something already done and to freely explore not yet beaten paths.

Fuori dal sentiero battuto

Pittura e musica illuminante, ipnotica, stellare con reminiscenze orientali che, in musica, ci riconducono alle orchestrazioni cosmiche e surreali dell’Arkestra di Sun Ra (così come in parte a quelle più ardite e complesse di Ornette Coleman) e, in pittura, alle prolifiche armonie cromatiche dell’action painting e non solo.
Musica/pittura, sinestesia pura quella offerta da Rob Mazurek, pratica sensoriale ormai consolidata che vede materializzarsi il percorso pittorico intrapreso su tanti dei suoi dischi. Le opere pittoriche che vi appaiono parlano infatti lo stesso linguaggio di ciò che si ascolta, quasi a completarne visivamente l’intimo messaggio sonoro.
Grandi opere quelle di Mazurek come quelle recentemente realizzate di straordinaria forza espressiva che ci regalano vibrazioni positive. Esse ci raccontano di mondi inesplorati, fascinose visioni animate da suggestivi linguaggi, come nelle opere dedicate al grande mentore Bill Dixon, in cui si decifrano codici, segni rupestri e le cui immagini fanno emergere nuove energie piene di luce, composizioni meravigliosamente libere che sprigionano slanci vitali.
Folgorato da un dipinto di Rothko, Mazurek passò tempo prezioso e necessario a copiare altre cose per imparare, con l’obiettivo primario di voler creare qualcosa che potesse essere onestamente suo e che provenisse dal suo vero sé. Pittura, scultura, musica, costruzione di scale sintetiche e strutture di accordi: Mazurek cerca di trovare il suo suono o il suo dipingere o il suo scolpire.
Sì, Mazurek sente l’impellenza di essere originale. “Non voglio essere un clone ambulante di qualcosa. E non si tratta di farsi notare, si tratta di essere una forza per la bellezza e il bene”.
Non è casuale che Mazurek  sia fortemente attratto dalla fantascienza proprio perché gli piace speculare su ciò che potrebbe essere. Egli agisce non solo per creare cose, ma perché sta cercando di superare qualcosa già dato e di esplorare nuovi sentieri non ancora battuti.



C Structure Trio

Space Nocturne in 8 Parts

Silent Glyph

Cosmic Stack

Da un’idea di e con la regia di Albano Morandi
Puegnago del Garda: Leonesia – Fondazione Vittorio Leonesio – settembre 2020
Rob Mazurek “Cosmic stacks”, a cura di Mariacristina Maccarinelli. Performance by Gabriele Mitelli

Rob Mazurek. Cosmic stacking
by Gaetano Fiore & Andrea Petrai

Installations anchored to the idea of creativity/invention and installation expertise, as the worker does on a construction site using the most varied forms of elaborate fibers found in the brick – the simplest, subdued constructive element made of baked clay.
It seems clear that Mazurek’s creative operation is not only to decontextualize these industrial products and then rebuild them as symbolic and mysterious images but also to materialize that “putting into shape” and give rise to a new lexicon of great flexibility and variety. A sort of “cosmic stacking” which with his music (trumpet and electronics) translates into pure sound research that accompanies sculptural works made with treated brick elements, “figurative expressions” which, like exposed surfaces in the form of textures, rise in a semicircle upwards in an operation to enhance the intimate three-dimensional properties.
And not only that …
Sinuous metal elements, volcanic stones, beams that in fact like a boat support meteorites that have come from who knows what planet, pictorial works with gold casts give light to variations andamazing chromatic effects such in “Space Nocturne in 8 Parts (2020)” or like the fusion of dyed stone on steel and brick in “Cosmic Stack # 2 (2019)”.
The installation of the stone pile of acoustic bricks, which are able to preserve and guarantee silence, would aim at reaching a goal at the apex of the path/process where a green volcanic stone stands out energetically, as an emblem-hymn of primal vital momentum, unspoiled nature, sound and tribal/propitiatory voice at the same time.
A silent yearning for an ideal immanent in things. A sanctity that exudes from the concrete gesture of laborious creation and from an ancient, ritual, expert and rigorous discipline that translates into animist expressive power. In the semicircle installations, C-shaped structure, encrypted messages of protection nestle in a collected loop, almost a port, a ‘buen retiro’, sheltered from the pitfalls of what can disturb the peace and crack the idyll. But also the firm will in the semi openness to include/welcome those who know how to stop, dwell on a threshold and are also willing to understand silence and its mirable wonders. The golden rocks, symbols of fulfillment and inner balance, the number three, the gilding that refers to a light which does not die out exactly like that of the mythical sparkling and wise philosopher’s stone, simultaneous crossroads of past and future in a never ending present.

Installazioni ancorate all’idea di creatività/invenzione e competenza installativa, proprio come fa l’operaio in un cantiere utilizzando le più svariate matrici che si trovano nel mattone – l’elemento costruttivo più semplice e umile fatto di argilla cotta.
Risulta evidente che l’operazione creativa di Mazurek non consiste solo nel decontestualizzare questi prodotti industriali per ricostruirli poi a guisa di immagini simboliche e misteriose, ma anche nel materializzare quella “messa in forma” e dare vita a un nuovo lessico di grandi flessibilità e varietà. Una sorta di “cosmic stacking” che mediante la sua musica (tromba ed elettronica) si traduce in pura ricerca che accompagna opere scultoree realizzate con elementi in laterizio trattato, “espressioni figurative” che, nella veste di  superfici a vista sotto forma di tessitura, si elevano a semicerchio verso l’alto in un’operazione volta a esaltarne le intime proprietà tridimensionali. E non solo ciò …
Elementi metallici sinuosi, pietre vulcaniche, travi che a mo’ di imbarcazione sostengono meteoriti provenienti da chissà quali remoti pianeti, opere pittoriche con calchi d’oro danno luce a variazioni e sorprendenti effetti cromatici ad esempio in “Space Nocturne in 8 Parts (2020)” o come la fusione di pietra colorata su acciaio e mattoni in “Cosmic Stack # 2 (2019)”.
L’installazione del mucchio di pietra di mattoni acustici, in grado di preservare e garantire il silenzio, mira forse a raggiungere un traguardo all’apice del percorso/processo dove una pietra vulcanica verde spicca e si staglia con energia,  emblema-inno di primigenio slancio vitale, incontaminata natura, suono e voce tribale/propiziatoria a un tempo.
Desiderio silente di un ideale immanente alle cose. Santità che trasuda dal gesto concreto della laboriosa creazione e da una disciplina antica, rituale, esperta e rigorosa tradotta in vigore espressivo animista. Nel semicerchio installazioni, struttura a C, messaggi di protezione criptati si annidano in un anello raccolto, quasi porto, ‘buen retiro’, al riparo dalle insidie di ciò che potrebbe turbare la quiete e rompere l’idillio. Ma anche la ferma volontà nella semi apertura di includere/accogliere chi sa arrestarsi, soffermarsi su una soglia ed è pure disposto a comprendere il silenzio e le sue mirabili meraviglie.
Le rocce dorate, simboli di appagamento ed equilibrio interiore, il numero tre, la doratura che rimanda a una luce che non si spegne alla stregua di quella della mitica pietra filosofale scintillante e sapiente, crocevia simultaneo di passato e futuro in un presente senza fine. Testi Gaetano Fiore e Andrea Petrai

Musiche di Rob Mazurek

Desert encrypts (audio)

Dimensional stardust (audio)