Szydlowski creates a whimsical world inhabited by round birds, striped trees and puppet-like people; a place where flights of fancy take us into a delighted realm of rich colour and shimmering glazes. The artist sets the stage and directs his characters on it then allows the viewer to interpret the action. Each painting is constructed in layers that compose a story; one that develops while the image evolves. We are invited to discover the artist's narrative or invent our own. Meanwhile poetic titles provide a point of entry to the fantasy and guide us through the painting.
The charm of his work cannot disguise Szydlowski's excellent command of composition and technique, the core of his signature style. The artist combines a respect for his cultural heritage with an understanding of classical drawing and selected aspects of modern art to produce a fantastic place and space where everyone is welcome to enter and help make the magic. He casts his spell by employing a vocabulary of personal symbols that are easily translated as they refer to universal concepts. The bird represents a sense of freedom, a single tree suggests the broader landscape, while the puppet-like figures are whoever we, the viewers, want them to be. These motifs, together with fine black lines, gold and silver leaf, are arranged in harmony with vivid hues, and held secure by the balanced design of composition.
Szydlowski is aware that good art will communicate across barriers of time and culture. He is a painter who comes to his canvas with a desire to make something beautiful. He is an artist who has no interest in competing with contemporaries, preferring instead to set his own goals. He is an individual who believes that if current dictates of art prevent him from making paintings people can enjoy, he will ignore them. After all, rules change but good art is constant.
Masters of Today - Judith McGrath