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Innovative artist shines as MOCA Student Artist-in-Residence

Brennan Wojtyla HeadshotTransdisciplinary artist Brennan Wojtyla discovered his artistic talents at a young age. “I was really young when I figured out this is what I wanted to do,” said Wojtyla. “I don’t see myself doing anything else.”
The Jacksonville native was MOCA's Student Artist-in-Residence during the fall semester. His work went on display Friday, Jan. 20 and will remain up until May 21. Wojtyla will be on hand at an opening reception Wednesday, Feb. 1 during Art Walk. This serves as his first solo exhibition.
Wojtyla, a Jacksonville native who graduated in December with a UNF degree in graphic design, first became aware of the Artist-in-Residence opportunity while taking a sculpture class. Using his graphic design expertise, he prepared a digital portfolio and submitted it for consideration. “Now I have funding and space to do bigger pieces,” he said.
Like many artists, Wojtyla says that his work is heavily influenced by his surroundings. He prefers to utilize industrial processes instead of traditional artistic techniques. His work incorporates materials and objects you may find on the side of the road such as pieces of wood, a slab of concrete or a toilet. He decontextualizes these industrial forms and recontextualizes them into fine art pieces using spray paint and other techniques. He prefers to create in this manner because he prefers his artistic expressions to be more work-based instead of artistic-based.
His MOCA exhibition represents a self-based practice known as “Cathedral of Labor.” The goal is to draw people’s attention to traditional forms and practices of everyday life that go unnoticed by giving them a different appearance. Wojtyla says that he is grateful for the assistance he’s received from the MOCA staff and the wealth of knowledge gained during his residency.
While expressing his excitement to have a dedicated space at MOCA for his work, Wojtyla also shared that he’s is eager to do more residencies in the future. Wojtyla hopes his art will help others see the beauty around them. “In a perfect world, I want someone to look at my work and hopefully realize that they can find beauty and inspiration in everyday occurrences and forms.”