PINPOINTING

2020

paper, wood, nails, Styrofoam, glass

100 x 70 cm, each

The exhibit shows a series of works titled Pinpointing.

It includes a series of quotes, scientific reports, observations, and conclusions on different experiments.

The chosen texts were chosen, printed on paper, and then laser-cut, letter by letter. These “independent” letters are then put back together and pinned onto a surface.

The setup of the exhibit resembles setups of entomological collections.

The title has two meanings: it can be understood as a literal description of the works (pinned down) or as a description of the content itself (an ironic attitude in which all scientific conclusions are presented as speculation and trying to pinpoint things).

Even though these texts are easy to understand and clear, there’s no real connection between them. The audience is left to speculate and try to pinpoint the very essence of the work.

The artist consciously put himself in the position of someone who wouldn’t be understood. Someone who can’t pinpoint anything about art.

Misunderstanding and lack of understanding are the real triggers for dialogue with the audience.

EPPUR SI MUOVE

2020

wood, chip board, toilet bowls, speakers, amplifiers, wire, carpet, sound

1200 x 600 x 60 cm

Most of the space is filled with a big rectangular wooden platform, and its hollow construction is filled with immersed toilet bowls.

We can hear obscure, indistinct sounds coming from the bowls.

These sounds were generated by scientific records of particles moving outside the Earth’s atmosphere. Transposed into a sound register, they create the so-called Earth Sound. The sound we hear is a manipulation of the scientific research results, which is a pure assumption of what it might sound like.

The gallery’s visitors can climb and walk the platform.

The decision to climb the platform brings you to a realization of danger: walking carelessly might put you into one of the holes. The risk is here, and you take your chances consciously. This also allows you to see others from a higher position.

The title Eppur si muove is a quote by Galileo Galilei. After publicly renouncing his heliocentric theory in court and saving his own life, he whispered this famous saying.

Scientific facts and superstitions are presented here at the same time and as equals: the claim that The Earth is flat, as well as scientific data, are equally represented here.

A romantic picture – seashells that help you hear the ocean once you press them against your ear – has been pushed to the absurd with the choice of materials (toilet bowls). The fact that this work uses second-hand bowls enhances this impression, bringing in a dose of discomfort and disgust.

AWRY

2018

paper, hot glue

When someone says something’s gone awry, we assume that it’s a result of unfortunate events, a mistake, an accident…

Also, there is a consistent practice of presenting an exhibit in a bigger city first and moving onto smaller cities later on.

Curators’ texts, consistently, have been describing and giving support to the exhibited works.

With Awry, I’ve turned all standards upside down:

I’ve asked the curator to write a foreword about a work that didn’t exist at that time; better yet, I’ve told her that her text would become the work itself. Simply, I told her what I wanted to do with her text.

Once it was written, the text was printed out and cut out from sheets of paper.

Then, I glued the letters onto the gallery walls, but upside down.

The carrier of the message – paper – became the message itself. It also lost its two-dimensionality and became a three-dimensional object.

The text was describing the situation in which it had been conceived and, although it was visible and clear, it demanded a certain effort to be read and understood.

The exhibit’s title might lead you to think that it’s completely awry, yet, that would be the wrong conclusion. The amount of effort, dedication, and precision put into the creation of this work denies this conclusion. From the first moment of creating the concept of this work, I had a clear idea of what I wanted to show in this exhibit, and how. I offered a picture and a thought about awryness, even though all that was a product of the intention to mislead people.

Is awryness always a product of an accident, or the result of a well-constructed intention?

WAITING AREA

2017

speaker, audio, 35′, loop

A speaker is placed in a bus waiting area in the village of Janjina.

Announcements start coming in irregular intervals: there is a recognizable sound signal, followed by a spoken announcement.

These announcements are usual, but they tell nothing about the trip: there is no information about departures, platform numbers, companies…

All we hear are service announcements: warnings about unlawful riding without tickets; reminders about letting seniors, disabled people, and pregnant women have a seat; prohibition of smoking while on board…

Today, Janjina has just one bus departure daily.

 

JUNGLE

2016

iron, wood, plastic, loudspeakers, audio amplifier, wire

audio, 34 channels, 60′  each, loop

The audio-visual environmental installation Jungle consists of 34 270-cm tall metal towers, at the tops of which are fixed horn speakers, used for reproduction and the amplification of the sound.

The sound, which is unintelligible and pretty irritating, derives from the reproduction of authentic audio recordings of celebrated speeches by historically important persons who set their stamp on the last century.

Processing these orations in the studio, synchronizing and a reshaping them, the artist has in the editing, at regular intervals, alternated normal speech and speech with modifications.

In consequence of the large number of speeches that are reproduced at the same time, the space is in thrall to acoustic chaos, where the individual speech is impossible to understand, just as it is impossible to set up any scale of values and differentiation.

The babble is interrupted when one of the speakers starts to repeat a single sound or syllable, the others soon following or imitating.

These inarticulate and pointless utterances are the only moment when everyone is speaking the same language, after which they go on with their own thing.

THE INCREDIBLE WORLD OF BLAVOR AND KRAVOSAS -exhibition

 

The Incredible World of Blavor and Kravosas is an art exhibit that took place at the gallery of the School of Fine Arts in Split.

Since high schoolers are the primary audience of this gallery, I’ve decided to make use of this fact.

I’ve made two snake puppets for this show: Sheltopusik and the Four-Lined Snake. Textile puppets are meant to embody two adolescent kids: the two are the same age as students in this school.

The works included in this exhibit explore serious, “eternal” life problems but also absurd questions and these are their titles:

Blavor and Kravosas Extravaganza, Blavor and Kravosas practice their manners, Blavor and Kravosas like what pussycats like, Blavor and Kravosas do experiments, Blavor and Kravosas being smart-asses, Blavor and Kravosas within the space-time continuum, Blavor and Kravosas vs. Tarantula, Blavor and Kravosas devise new plans.

BLAVOR AND KRAVOSAS EXTRAVAGANZA

Exhibit’s introductory music.

BLAVOR AND KRAVOSAS LIKES WHAT PUSSYCATS LIKES

2016

mixed media

video 2′ 05”, loop

Simulation of a fashion salon.

King Cobra Boutique is presenting its newest spring-summer collection. Several color combinations for snake patterns are shown in glass cases. Each case is displaying a collection for a certain occasion. A video is showing some of those combinations.

Blavor and Kravosas are following fashion trends to score with girls.

BLAVOR AND KRAVOSAS DO EXPERIMENTS

2016

fabric, plastic, light bulbs, wire

When you say you’re “experimenting” with something, it usually means you’re trying to find new ways to do something: skipping class, getting money for a night out, buying booze, getting weed, entering a concert for free…

Sheltopusik and the Four-Lined Snake are shown as an alchemy symbol, the Ouroboros. Just like ancient alchemists, they are in search of the Philosopher’s stone and the Elixir of life – the solutions to all their problems.

There are small light bulbs that light up around them, symbolizing new ideas.

BLAVOR AND KRAVOSAS ARE SMART ASSES

2016

video, 9′ 11” loop

Blavor is reading the Critique of Practical Reason by Immanuel Kant while Kravosas reads the Critique of Dialectical Reason by Jean-Paul Sartre.

BLAVOR AND KRAVOSAS VS. TARANTULA

2016

video, 1′ 41”, loop, rope

Just as anybody else, Blavor and Kravosas have rational and irrational fears. They have arachnophobia – fear of spiders.

BLAVOR AND KRAVOSAS ARE FIGURING OUT NEW PLANS

2016

mixed media, video, posters

Blavor and Kravosas’ lounge space.

The walls are covered in posters of famous snakes. Surrounded by empty beer bottles and dirty ashtrays, Blavor and Kravosas kill time watching adult snake movies.

THOUGHTS FOR MARCH

2016

Thoughts for March is an ambient/light installation consisting of 16 light objects which light up alternately.

Materials, dimensions, forms, and placement of these objects are variable and each of these objects is carrying a text message/thought that can be interpreted in a couple of ways, and the spectator should choose how to interpret them.

The title of this work reflects the work “Thoughts for Months” by the Gorgona art group.

This show originally took place in March, which finally defined its title.

Chosen thoughts:

– What were you thinking

– It doesn’t matter now

– What more do you want

– No reason to be afraid

– What are you willing to lose

– The unconscious is history

– Done with generosity

– The middle is everywhere

– Senseless explanations

– Imagine the shame

– Such luck

– Save your opinion

– What the hell is wrong with you

– Now is a good time

– The worst is now behind us

– Everything else is life

APPASSIONATA

2015

audio installation

There are speakers in trees and on their branches. We can hear female and male voices saying: „Oh, my God“.

Played in irregular intervals and from different positions, those voices appear like bird sounds.

The voices have no clear structure, but they create a composition with a title referring to Beethoven’s composition.

Passionate invocations of God are brought to a point of absurdity.

APPASSIONATA_audio 1_simulation

APPASSIONATA_audio 2_simulation

ABSOLUTELY NOTHING

2015

paper, nylon

There are sheets of paper hanging from the gallery’s ceiling. They are empty and white, with perforations meant for the transparent nylon to connect them to the ceiling.

Raising the work above the spectators affects their point of view. Although empty, light and with “carnival” properties, those sheets create a certain feeling of discomfort.

All the papers are hollow, empty. There’s nothing on them. The gallery is full of nothing.

A philosophical question: what is all, what is nothing?

Absolutely nothing. Or, the Absolute is nothing.

ANY COLOUR YOU LIKE

2014

wood, fabric, microphone

Any Colour You Like is an installation meant to question the relations of identities: personal, national, cultural, political.

Seven stages with rostrums and microphones are placed in the gallery, with waving flags behind them. Each group (stage, rostrum, flag) has its color: blue, red, yellow, white, black, green, and pink.

While I was staying in Canada, we often discussed identity. Apart from your presumed identities (citizenship, religion…), we spoke of presumed identities and free choices, identifying with certain groups (rock, punk, vegan…), and of political orientation as an important part of one’s own identity. I noticed how representing your points of view can often exclude other people’s opinions.

The gallery space was thus transformed into space for free speech.

Each color stands for a political or social orientation: blue – the right; red – the left; yellow – liberal; white – pacifist; black – extreme right, anarchy; green – ecology; pink – gender issues and sexuality.

Visitors can choose their stage according to their point of view or their aesthetic preference and they are invited to hold a speech.

Now that we are equipped for a public speech, the question remains: do we dare speak (up)?

CAPTIONS

2014

multi- channel video installation

I’ve cut out newspapers, extracting soap opera announcements. These texts were then edited: I’ve removed all the protagonists’ names and replaced them with pronouns.

This made room for over 10 000 new sentences which describe actions and events between anonymous participants.

These texts are then played on several TV screens.

Since the texts vary in length and rhythm, it’s possible to combine and connect them into endless narratives without true structure or time/space limits.

The banality of soap operas intrigues and seduces us with this potential story, putting viewers in a position of a voyeur, trying to grasp other people’s juicy drama.

ON RÉALISE QUE L’ON A TOUT PERDU

2013

On réalise que l’on a tout perdu is a series of works created during my sta yin Rennes, france.

Taken out of my everyday context, in a completely new environment, I’ve decided to take this situation of a foreign body in a foreign ambient and adopt it as a model, a subject.

I was also interested in the relationship between the public and private spaces; between one’s own intimacy and their tendency to peer into other people’s privacies; between indifference and curiosity.

The popular song Non, je ne regrette rien and movie/TV show scripts have inspired me to do this.

Excerpts from the song and movie announcements – text templates that describe intimate events between anonymous protagonists were made as:

a) a series of stickers distributed along the city center

b) a projection on the media façade of the youth information center (Centre régional information jeunesse) – a video whose structure and form resemble promo materials that are usually displayed there

c) a projection in front of the museum of fine arts (Musée des Beaux-Arts) – text “I REGRET NOTHING”

d) audio ambient-texts that I’ve used were made into sound voice announcements on bus stops or airports

e) a publication – Travesías review #4 – containing all the texts in both French and Croatian; artist’s book, which is also a catalog.

MONEY CAN’T BUY THIS

2013

banner, canvas, silkprint, 60 x 900 cm

A commercial canvas is mounted on a popular promenade, in an idyllical ambient at the seashore – a “living room” for many a Split’s residents.

The text: Money Can’t Buy This is a frequent saying that depicts the perfection of a moment while having drinks with friends, enjoying the Sun’s heat, and enjoying your life to the fullest! These are the moments of complete bliss.

Unlike other commercials that incite you to buy, see or visit something (action), this message invites you to do nothing because everything is perfect as it is now.

Simply priceless.

BROADWAY BOOGIE- WOOGIE

2013

newspaper painted black, rope, OSB pannel

260 x 260 x 100 cm (part 1, paper)

260 x 100 x 70 cm (part 2, paper)

Two halves of the model that represents New York’s Empire State Building are hanging from a ceiling on thin black ropes, not touching the ground.

The model is made of lined newspaper, which is covered with black paint on both sides. Individual segments of the façade are cut out from bigger sheets of lined and painted paper. Window openings were cut out from each of the segments.

The process of constructing the work is equally important as its final appearance.

Construction, making of the material from which the work is made up (gluing individual sheets of paper, coloring the lined paper) precedes the deconstruction of architectural elements (braking the façade into smaller segments, cutting out holes, “sawing” the building in half).

In the end, individual elements are again combined in the form associated with the original model.

The icon, the symbol of power, prosperity, civilization breakthroughs etc. is thus brought to the absurd.

The title of the work, Broadway Boogie-Woogie, refers to another icon – the famous painting by Piet Mondrian from his New York period – but the coloristic playfulness is replaced here by monochromacity / black monolithic structure.

Creation and annulment, construction and deconstruction, being – not being, content and form… continuously exchange places in this work, questioning, among other things, the terms’ philosophical aspects and meanings.

SAD BUT TRUE – exhibition

2013

works presented on exhibition

GOLDEN MEAN, VEDRAN AND THE CLOUD , TRUE IMAGE, PENALTY KICKS, INSTANT MONUMENT, YOU’LL NEVER GET TO HEAVEN (TRA-LA-LA), SAD BUT TRUE, I’M READY TO SHOOT, BUT HAVE NO CANNON, PRACTICE MAKES THE MASTER, VEDRAN PERKOV, NATIONAL TREASURE, BLACK, GOLDEN, HIS MAJESTY’S FOOLY, YETI MUSEUM

YETI MUSEUM

2013

XPS, cardboard, 320 x 245 x 110 cm

The situation with the Contemporary Art Museum of Istria, which hosted the Sad But True exhibit, is quite unusual.

The establishing of the museum was a purely political decision which didn’t consider practical issues: the museum hasn’t got a building, it uses unfitting spaces for shows, it doesn’t have an appropriate storage room…

Inspired by this situation, I’ve created a model of the museum’s building and named it Yeti Museum.

The Contemporary Art Museum of Istria is like the mythical Yeti – everyone’s heard of it but no one knows what it looks like.

In the Croatian language, when you say: “Je ti (jeti=yeti) muzej”, then it also means: “You call this a museum?”

COMB FOR THE CLOUDS

2012

plastic, 600 x 30 x 3 cm

there is an abandoned lighthouse on the small island Mulo

an initiative was started to use the lighthouse as residential and exhibition space

as a part of that initiative, a one-day exhibition / action was organized

I made a 6-meter construction with a comb on top; the comb is in a constant, slow movement because of the wind

this work talks about man’s desire to adapt everything to himself and his constant urge to control the nature

WOULD I LIE TO YOU

2012

sound, 4’ 41’’, loudspeakers, light, stage

 

electronically processed pop song “Would I Lie to You” by an American music duo Charles and Eddie

 

original sheet music is played by various percussion instruments, thus creating a militant rhythm; speech synthesis software transforms the lyrics to spoken words

 

a false, manipulated version of the song is created, although the text is trying to convince us otherwise, i.e. that we would never lie

 

lie as a dominant fact of the present moment

 

the positions that disseminate lies are trying to convince (us) that they are actually being sincere

 

presentation: the song is continuously played from two loudspeakers suspended over the stage; stairs that lead to the stage invite the viewer to climb up and assume “the position”

 

WOULD I LIE TO YOU_audio

GOLDEN MEAN

2012

billboard

Bačvice Beach, one of the favorite cliché pictures of Split, a place for relaxation and recreation, the ideal “golden” mean for leisure

the City of Split is also a cliché, and so is the life in this city

to deviate from the accepted norms, whether by being above average or below it, isn’t favorably looked upon, and it usually brings the “appropriate” tag. “golden mean” is fostered – a mediocre approach to all levels of existence

this jumbo poster invites us to Dionysian enjoyment of life; leaving all worries, problems, tasks and responsibilities  behind…

the standard unimaginative form of advertising Croatian tourist attractions has been adopted: a photo-landscape that can be identified only by the title

all of this takes place in the country whose main source of income is tourism, i.e. where the jobs are created through other people’s leisure

SITUATION

2012

seedling fair, banner

the Dimensions of Humour (Dimenzije humora) exhibition was to be held in the cellars of Diocletian’s Palace, Split; I was co-organizer of the exhibition and one of the artists whose works were to be presented

Diocletian’s cellars are a public space; apart from exhibitions, many different events take place there

although the dates for the exhibition were set far in advance, there was on overlap with the Seedling Fair; this happened because Split was struck by a snow storm; since the city was totally unprepared, there was a complete collapse of all public services; school was cancelled, city was blocked for days and it took several days for the cleaning to start

despite the alarming situation and the fact that over 900 people were injured (broken arms and legs), the mayor said that he finds the situation funny

the Seedling Fair, which was taking place in the Cellars before the Dimensions of Humour exhibition started, was closed for two weeks due to the above mentioned reasons

organizers of the Fair asked for prolongation and were granted permission

one part of the exhibition space was occupied by the Seedling Fair, thus splitting the exhibition in two; two events were to share the “living space” for two weeks

I decided to turn the situation to our advantage; I appropriated the Seedling Fair, i.e. I declared it my work; the only thing I added was a banner: RUN FOR YOUR LIFE or SAVE YOUR OWN ASS IF YOU CAN (SPAŠAVAJ SE KO MOŽE)

by doing this I managed to connect two “sections” of the exhibition into one whole

I could never have imagined this quantity of absurd, irony and parody; appropriation was an imposed solution

I especially liked the idea of work having two stages: before and after, with and without the Fair; the seedlings would be taken away and the only thing remaining would be the banner

this works refers to another work of mine, SIMULATION, in which I used same materials, i.e. plants and banners; in that work I simulated a specific image / scene, now I was given the materials and the situation

it is interesting to note that SIMULATION was set in Osijek, where the whole series of Dimensions of Humour exhibitions started

C’MON FOLKS!

2011

The exhibition project “Snapshot-city” was placed in the newly erected residential building in Trnje, one of the districts of Croatia’s capital, Zagreb. The project opens the area of communication.

The artistic work in the delicate space of urban metamorphoses establishes a space and time frame for interaction between those that lived there, those that are moving in, and all of us who are interested in what happens with the city and its people.

Marina Viculin, curator

(Excerpt from the exhibition expose.)

As a part of this project, I exhibited two works. The idea of establishing contact and making acquaintances, which should develop into mutual trust, underlies both of my works.

during the exhibition opening, the visitors were offered mulled wine, tea and grilled sausages: C’MON, FOLKS!

the table becomes the center of the exhibition; the place where people gather, the point of contact between the visitors

“homey”, pleasant atmosphere is created

connections are established between the newly comes (future tenants of the building) and the locals, who have been living in this neighborhood for years

the investor is also inviting the buyers: C’MON, FOLKS!

FIRST CONTACT

2011

light

the topic of the work is making contact

the new building drastically changed the appearance of the old, crumbly neighborhood

in it’s surrounding, the building looks like a foreign body, an alien

I placed the light installation at the top floor of the building

EVERYTHING IS UNDER CONTROL

2011

print

nine years after one of my first solo exhibitions, DON’T WORRY, EVERYTHING IS UNDER CONTROL, I was again invited to exhibit at the same gallery

the starting point for this work was my reflection on the work that I first exhibited at the gallery, and the position of the (then) unrecognized author and the (presently) affirmed artist

I omitted the first part of first exhibition’s title, now stating that EVERYTHING IS UNDER CONTROL

the title sounds reassuring

the ultimate aim of every action is to control the situation; the unpredictability is unwanted

my career as an exhibiting artist, viewed through the prism of insecurity and uncertainty, is now replaced with the attitude of ultimate and absolute control over my actions / career

the evidence can be found in the work that I am exhibiting

everything starts when I roll three dices. I write down the combination of numbers and keep rolling the dices until I get the same combination again. Along the way, I write down all other combinations of numbers

once the cycle is “closed”, I count how many times I got a single number and every of the possible combinations

I do a statistical representation of my results, with charts and graphs

I toss the dices again and repeat the action with a new combination of numbers

although the number of possible combinations is limited, the final outcome is uncertain

coincidence control is an illusory goal; regardless of how much one is devoted to the work, the result is impossible to predict

a bunch of seemingly useless calculations confirms the uselessness of the action

SHAME

2011

text: PLACE A MIRROR HERE

“Dictionary of Everyday Relations” is a project realized in a partnership with daily newspaper Novi List

30 Croatian artists were invited to illustrate 30 terms (concepts) relating to human relations

the illustrations were published in alphabetical order in Mediteran, feulleton in the daily newspaper Novi List

each artist illustrated one term (concept)

I illustrated the term SHAME

MAYBE IT WILL HOLD

2011

cardboard, adhesive tape, 300 x 300 x 280 cm

text for catalog:

To open a private gallery that will promote and exhibit contemporary art cannot be considered the wisest thing today. We might even call it insanity! This is exactly what Božidar Jurjevic decided to do.

From the very beginning Božidar has been doing the best he can to keep the program running. Most of his work can be characterized as improvisation, not a planned strategy. Some might say: Nothing new, nothing unusual… We are witnessing improvisation on all levels of society, politics and economics!

I placed a construction made of cardboard tubes in the middle of Božidar’s gallery. The tubes are wrapped with brown self-adhesive tape. The fragile construction supports the ceiling and prevents it from falling down.

The support is symbolic: it symbolizes my support for (Božidar’s) persistence, inspite of everything.

Maybe it will hold.

MOVING IN

2011

for me, the invitation to exhibit in the Mestrović Gallery was a great honor and recognition, since Mestrovic is one of the greatest Croatian artists

in spite that, I was aware that those kinds of exhibitions, especially in the city such as Split, are only possible because of the tourist season, and that they are in fact a part of the tourist offer

although this kind of museum “activity” is quite rare in Croatia, I could not ignore the “campaign” character of the project

this situation is similar to what we experience every day

“tourism” has become a stimulus and an excuse for most of the things that happen in Split

although we like to say that we are a touristic city, we are almost always unprepared for the tourist season

construction works on the streets, on the buildings and in the public spaces are most intense during the touristic season. They create problems and cause chaotic situations, for both the tourists and the locals

in addition to this, tourism is one of the means of earning extra money- many people in Split rent their apartments and houses during summer, or host relatives and friends

those everyday situations were the initial inspiration for this exhibition

I decided to move in the Mestrović Gallery

like in a “real” moving-in, I brought wooden crates and cardboard boxes

I created the “under construction” situation: the works are just about the be finished, the exhibition is just about to be set

my message to Mestrović is that we have to “squeeze” ourselves: It is summer, and the guests have arrived!

almost all crates and boxes are sealed

I am aware of the fact that this is just temporary, that the moving-out is inevitable

the exhibition raises the question of our relation with the past and the heritage that has been entrusted to our care

for this exhibition, I made several works that directly refer to the works of Mestrović

THE NEWER HISTORY OF THE CROATS

2011

mixed media, 160 x 130 x 80 cm

in the ground floor of the Gallery two Mestrović’s works are exhibited:  Reverie and In Despair

the Gallery’s floor is made of two kinds of natural stone tiles, arranged in a checkerboard pattern- this reminded me of the Republic of Croatia’s coat of arms

I made a sculpture of undefined shape

the title of the sculpture evokes another Mestrović’s work: History of the Croats

my sculpture is placed between Mestrović’s sculptures  Reverie and In Despair

this position best describes the current position of Croatia

the fact that we have an independent and sovereign country cannot hide the fact that we are far from the vision that we had when the country was being created

the “in-between” situation; between the dreams and despair

PEACOCK TAIL

2011

cardboard, adhesive tape, 410 x 205 x 4 cm

a cardboard construction is placed behind the sculpture of Job, which is considered to be one of Mestrović’s mater-pieces

my work cannot be observed separately, and vice versa

by adopting and overtaking Mestrović’s sculpture, I adopt the quality oh his work; I “adorn myself with borrowed plumes”

RANDY GIRLS

2011

XPS, cardboard, 200 x 100 x 12 cm

XPS, cardboard, 100 x 300 x 12 cm

a series of six reliefs made of Styrofoam, five Randy Girls and one Big Randy Girl

the reliefs are exhibited in the room that holds Mestrovic’s sculptures of women and his drawings of male nudes

the message that the reliefs transmit is that of women being reduced to shallow stereotypes that flood the media (especially male magazines)

the enhanced reading of the works is accomplished through contrast with the forms and materials of Mestrović’s women: mothers, widows and nudes

I do not compete with Mestrović, neither with the materials nor with my sculpting skills

HEAD OF A VICTOR

2011

plaster, 45 x 25 x 20 cm

I placed my self-portrait in the room where Mestrović’s portraits and figures are exhibited

infiltration in the permanent display is intensified by the title of the work, which resembles that of the other works exhibited in the room

self-ironically, I let people know that that is where I belong

HEAD OF THE HORSE OF THE UNKNOWN HERO

2011

video, 0′ 25”, loop

Ivan Mestrović is the author of numerous public sculptures and monuments

national heroes, kings, soldiers… were usually represented riding a horse

the work is a critique of the lack of public sculptures, especially those representing notable individuals from the recent Croatian history

a horse’s head brought to someone’s home represents “an offer that cannot be refused” (the analogy with F. F. Coppola’s movie “The Godfather”)

the systems of valorization and their liability to partial interests

ONE ON ONE – exhibition

2010

the exhibition from “One on One” series is narrated / presented in first person

I use my character in different contexts

I am basically exploring different aspects of creating and exhibiting art; position of the artist in and out of the art world, meaning of artistic work and its importance, fields of artist action, limits, viewer’s perception etc.

despite the personal view and auto-reflection, the works presented clearly refer to specific social situations

following works were presented at the exhibition: PRACTICE MAKES THE MASTER, BLACK, GOLDEN, VEDRAN PERKOV, SAD BUT TRUE, TRUE IMAGE, HIS MAJESTY’S FOOLY, NATIONAL TREASURE and I’M READY TO SHOOT, BUT HAVE NO CANNON

PRACTICE MAKES THE MASTER

2010

wood, video, 4′ 16” loop

sound is coming from behind the wall made of planks

when the spectator gets closer, through gaps between the planks he/she observes a video featuring the artist

I sit on the floor with my back against the wall; I’m throwing a tennis ball against the opposite wall and catching it again

endless repetition of one and the same meaningless action; practicing until perfection is attained

although the artist is free to choose his/her method(s) of work, he/she is bound by the limits of the artistic calling; marginalized, trapped in the narrow field of the art world

remake of the scene with Steve McQueen from the movie The Great Escape

BLACK and GOLDEN

2010

mixed media, PVC, 300 x 300 cm, each

two self-portraits; one painting is made from various types of black paint, the other is made of various types of gold

the paints are not mixed; each one is used exactly as it is manufactured

analytic and primary painting, monochrome, figurative – these are some of the issues that this work deals with

this is the first time in my professional career that I exhibit paintings

the titles are descriptive and suggestive; they describe the painting, but at the same time give the portraits (i.e. the author) a character

opposites are placed next to each other

VEDRAN PERKOV

2010

stainless steel, rope, wood, XPC, plaster gauze, Ø 140 cm

bas-relief with my profile and name hangs on the wall

a rope barrier keeps visitors from getting too close

the setup suggests that the work presents an important person or character

the work is reminiscent of coins with portraits of rulers or important historic figures

it talks about the position of the author; the adoration, ambition and self-promotion

SAD BUT TRUE

2010

video, 5′ 36”

a video in which I perform the song “Sad but True” by Metallica

on each of the five monitors I’m shown performing the score: rhythm guitar, lead guitar, bass guitar, drums and vocals

although I have little or no knowledge of playing the instruments, I try my best

despite the efforts the result is miserable

doing things that go beyond one’s competences, knowledge and capabilities

lack of respect towards other people’s work and achievements

pretentious setting; high technology is used to hide the obvious incompetence

the work is a projection of the present moment in society

TRUE IMAGE

2010

video, 26′ 10”

video made in manner of TV documentaries using media for self-promotion

I invited people of different vocations to describe their impressions of me and my work in front of camera participants:

Božo Majstorović – Director of the Art Gallery in Split

Blaženka Perica – art historian

Damir Sokić – artist

Marina Viculin – curator

Jasmila Žbanić – director

Leon Lučev – actor

Dario Gregov – commander of Zlarin Volunteer Fire Company

Boris Greiner – writer

the documentary reveals my great success in art world, as well as some details from my private life, my education and childhood and my public engagement

in carefully chosen words, they talk about my acting talent (I’m compared to Robert De Niro and Marlon Brando), knowledge of linguistics and literature, saved lives and protected property in fires

half-truths, fabrication, exaggeration and glorification with no bases in reality – are presented as facts

the visitor/observer is manipulated into believing that he or she is getting to know the true and undistorted image of author

as part the project “Photo of Sound” the Third Programme the Croatian Radio (Hrvatski radio), audio version of this work was broadcasted as radio show; the Croatian Radio co-produced it www.swiss-replica.cc tissot watches

VEDRAN AND THE CLOUD

2010

video, 6′ 39”

in this video work I’m holding clouds made of styrofoam in my hands, dressed in a tight golden costume that covers my head and body

disguised, I resemble a superhero with extraordinary powers

I play with the idea of power

Croatian phrase “vedriti i oblačiti” (“bind and loosen”) is used as a reference to someone who has huge – political, financial, economic, social… – power or holds an important position

analogy with my name – Vedran: sunny day, a day without a cloud

in this case, I’m the one who “vedri i oblači” (“binds and loosens”)

VEDRAN AND THE CLOUD_video

HIS MAJESTY’S FOOLY

2010

ambient installation, mixed media, changeable dimensions

ambience of the royal court

a throne with a lion figure on each side, decorative plants, red and gold curtains; light show on the wall behind the throne

red flags with my face portrayed, my carved portrait heads on pedestals; one can assume that the throne also belongs to me

praising and glorifying the author as the highest authority; cult of personality

the gallery as a place where the author can be worshiped / the exhibition as the opportunity to worship the author

criticism of the exhibition politics and valorization in the art world

NATIONAL TREASURE

2010

chocolate, gold foil, Ø 3,5 cm each

chest with gold coins (ducats)

chocolate coins wrapped in gold foil; my face and my name are embossed on the foil

the visitor can take and consume gold coins

the artist occupies a special place and as has the value of national treasure

quick and easy consumption of the afore-mentioned values

I’M READY TO SHOOT, BUT HAVE NO CANNON

2010

photography

dressed in a traditional military uniform, I declare readiness to take action, but I confess that I’m not able to perform

phrase “to shoot from a cannon” is used mainly as an expression of dissatisfaction, frustration, desire to create new conditions through destruction, to change the present state

the phrase is also used to express readiness to achieve the highest goals

I DIDN’T MEAN LIKE THAT

2010

the exhibition at the Waldinger Gallery in Osijek is a part of the series of exhibitions in which I dwell upon art and deal with art-related topics

I focused on the conceptual approach, which is my basic principle of work

my initial impetus was the fact that this is my first exhibition in Osijek and that the public there doesn’t know me well

I don’t know much about the situation in Osijek, so I couldn’t refer to a specific situation or context

misunderstanding is the starting point of interaction with the audience; the audience doesn’t know what I’m thinking, I don’t know how the audience is thinking

I made a series of works that, visually, don’t lead to a specific conclusion or transmit a particular message; then I disassociated myself from any explanation of the work

I also distanced myself from the text in the catalogue and the possible interpretations of the works described

I tried to animate the visitors to think about the exhibited works; they hold the key to their understanding

whatever their conclusion is – it’s not correct, because I didn’t mean like that!

the myth of the crazy, wacky artist who no-one understands

voluntarily taking that role

conversations that I had at the opening of the exhibition offered a completely new vision of works from those I had when I created them