Barbara Mydlak is a contemporary Polish artist, born in 1987 in Bilgoraj (Poland). She lives in Belgium and Poland. She is an archaeology graduate of the Faculty of History at the University of Warsaw. In 2017 she graduated with honours from the Faculty of Visual Arts at the Strzeminski Academy of Fine Arts in Łódź, Poland.
In 2017 she started her doctoral studies at the Faculty of Painting and Drawing, University of Fine Arts in Poznań. From 2019 to 2021 she was a lecturer at the Faculty of Design, Academy of Fine Arts in Szczecin. She has lectured and held workshops at China Academy of Art (CAA) in Hangzhou, Tainan National University of The Arts (TNNUA) and others.
In September 2022, she opened her own art studio in Ghent, as one of the artists selected for the Nucleo Kunstenaars Ateliers program. She works in a variety of fields and media, including textiles, handmade paper, experimental film, drawing, installation and stage design.
Developing a kind of 'survival art', she places great emphasis on the ability to create material from scratch, on her own, with the final artwork often including an information about the creation and processing of the materials. The organic waste, decaying plants, leftovers and rubbish that she finds and collects in certain places are transformed by her into new forms and gain new meanings.
Mydlak combines different materials, media and techniques to create her installations. She tries to evoke memories through smells and tastes of objects or sounds and through moving images. She expanded her knowledge during her archaeological studies, especially in the field of bioarchaeology. Her work draws on her archaeological experience, where she interprets and explores spaces, talks to local people, conducts interviews and researches. She combines her knowledge of craft and science with her emotions to develop her individual visual narration and original methods. For her, research is an ongoing performative process.