Jasminka Babić- Dreams of Riker

Vedran Perkov’s exhibition title The Things That Dreams are Made of reveals a lot. Indeed, what are our dreams made of? Those are the dreams of typical consumers of the contemporary society and popular culture, that are at the same time dreams of the adult, “serious” people who nevertheless have a childlike hope that heroes truly exist. And even more, what if we can identify with that brave, almighty, handsome, almost perfect superhero…?
All of Vedran’s works have specific humour and self-irony. Their value lies in the fact that they always remain within the safe border between the simply funny and ironic, never to cross into any of the extremes. The author bravely puts himself in the situation in which he honestly daydreams of superheroes, powerful aircrafts, creates spaces of childlike imagination, sharing with the visitor his own intimate space, at the same time giving a clear social and critical note. Often that note is present through certain uneasiness, such as in the work entitled The Beast (Circus, Nova Gallery, Zagreb 2004) The beast is in fact a huge teddy bear stuffed with straw that takes up almost the whole exhibition room, and as times goes by it gets worn out. Perkov uses similar procedure in the works connected to the icons of popular culture, such as StarTrek. At the exhibition at Josip Račić Studio (with Marko Tadić, Zagreb 2005) the author exhibited the work entitled The Final Frontier. Out of plastic material, he constructed the mythical space ship Voyager that floated in the exhibition room supported by the wire cables.
The air was blown into the body of the spaceship, but as the joints didn’t “hold” the air was moving out, creating the impression that the installation was barely holding its given share. Thematically continuing the last exhibition, Vedran has created one new spaceship and two spacesuits. Works entitled Starship Captain’s Extravehicular Suit, Heavycruiser Battleunit Commander’s Suit – 3rd generation, and Interstellar Thunderbird (prototype) lead us again into the world of interstellar travel. The spaceship prototype is exhibited in a manner of some car show, completely ready for the test drive. Spacesuits constructed in detail are meant for crucial battles or stroll allong same remote world, readily await commander Riker. Or maybe not?
Vedran does not insist on the perfection of the way the work looks, and remains at a safe distance from the demanding production of special effects (although his constructions are complex and elaborate). His objects always remain charmingly imperfect, revealing the true inability of fulfilling their original function, reminding us that all this is after all, merely a dream.

William T. Riker is the character from the Star Trek TV series

Ana Dević- Circus, Carnival, Spectacle, Scaffold…

“In a distant picture the object cannot be ridiculous; it has to be brought up close to become ridiculous. The whole of carnivalesque creation operates in the zone of maximal propinquity.”
Mikhail Bakhtin

The appropriation, fragmentation, laying bare and reworking of a wide register of signs, mainly from the iconography of popular culture, goes on in the works of Marko Tadić and Vedran Perkov. Although a sense for fun is an important characteristic of theirs, the recognisable visual motley of works of the two artists almost always gives off a kind of unease. It wells from a critical experience of the social and media surroundings and the instability and vulnerability of one’s own place within these systems. The two artists are linked by a kindred sensitivity for the carnivalesque, for the passion to turn things topsy-turvy, for de-composition, an aptitude for uncovering vacuous showcasing, delving behind the porous farades of power, researching media contamination, portraying the everyday in the clash of contrasts of the transitional economy – consumerism and impoverishment. The theatrical and carnivalesque installations of Vedran Perkov are almost always an indirect criticism of social reality. The icons of the mass entertainment industry and pop culture are used as ideational models for the realisation of various hybrid objects and ambiences. Perkov investigates the critical potentials of signs, icons and symbols that as a result of overuse and consumption have been exhausted, worn down, devalued. New meanings are formed at the edges, as a by-product of multiple consumptions, as a kind of surplus that is realised in contrast and opposition to their original settings. Pessimism, then, will occupy the place of optimism, cowardice takes the place of heroism, impotence of power, coercion replaces entertainment, violence childish innocence. Vedran reworks and domesticates the commonplaces of global mass culture, like teddies, Batman, smileys or balloons, relocates them in the context of the social and political space that surrounds him. The frequently enlarged dimensions of objects produce unease; the manner they occupy the space is not devoid of charm and a kind of humour, and the impression is acquired that these objects are really doing something in the gallery venue or that something has just been done to them. For example, in the Beast installation (Nova Gallery, 2004), which in the form of a vastly enlarged teddy claustrophobically took up almost the whole of the exhibition space, it was impossible to determine whether it is the active or passive subject of violence. Perkov does not use already produced, original, mass produced objects as ready-mades, but redesigns the objects and makes them by hand, leaving the seams, the gaps and the joins visible. On this occasion he exhibits two similar spatial installations that indirectly thematise the issues of power, the form and condition of each object being the crucial factor. The Final Frontier draws its inspiration from Star Trek and is a kind of low-tech replica of the room, is actually a many-seamed cottage-industry production. The massive but rather frail installation needs the life support of a stream of air that, as the aggressive sound warns, is constantly pumped in from the base of the sculpture. While this cobbled-together Voyager leaks air on all sides, keeping itself in the air with enormous effort, the installation Le Voyage Infinitif consists of two anonymous, coloured (grounded or crashed?) only just knocked-up planes. Icons of the representation of progress, modernism, sovereignty and power, like planes and spaceships, reduced to dysfunctional parodies of themselves openly invert social representations of power, underscoring the atmosphere of failure and unmet promises. The works of Marko Tadić are of a hybrid form that investigate the status of artistic and everyday objects, their functions for use, decoration and symbolism. They are shaped at the boundaries of painting, graffiti, collage, photography, objects and ambiental installations; yet most of all they are defined by the private sphere, a diarist’s passion for collection, an interest in the quotidian, a propensity for the decorative, for kitsch and transformation. Marko often paints and collages reject or cheap use-objects: plastic plates, wooden chopping boards, cheap coasters, all kinds of found objects. His pictures or objects develop a specific kind of iconicity, linking an appealing colouristic graphism with fragments of words and sentences, numbers, graffiti, idioms, pop quotes, from which absurd slogans and weird combinations of image and words are formed. The collage units, which have very distinct colouristic qualities and are composed of disparate fragments, reflect the urban context of everyday life, elements of cinematic and comic strip aesthetics, the iconography of contemporary design, fashion, music and life styles. The recent works of this artist create several interlinked wholes: a series of picture-objects and photographs, slides, Polaroids. Welling from the specific needs of Marko’s obsessive recording and marking of his own surrounds, the space in which he lives, moves and works, these series deal with the relations between inner and outer space, the problem of the body and its presence. At the visual level these relations are often effectuated by merging, contrasting or integrating the foreground and the background. Although in general the forms in which pictures, objects and photographs are crossed have been present in Marko’s work for quite some time (Household, Nova Gallery, 2003), now there are several interesting spatial and semantic shifts taking place. The installation Landscape consists of a series of collage paintings done on Perspex, on the partially transparent surface of which slides are projected: objects, items, situations, landscapes – all part of the author’s everyday life. While the series of Polaroids literally and monotonously records daily life diary-style, mingling melancholic interiors, cloying and weird landscapes regularly devoid of any human presence, the photographic sequence of photo pairs confronts two apparently identical scenes. Shot in Marko’s rented flat in Florence the photographs are differentiated by the hardly visible presence of the author in one of them. He is regularly located in the middle ground or background of the picture, fragmented or lying down, as if suggesting the frail limits of his own existence and presence. The Souvenirs series carries directly on from previously made series of painted plastic plates. Using them mainly as mere background, Marko now goes in for found decorative wooden plates – old fashioned souvenirs of towns and tourist spots. The existing background is now used in a different way; the original depictions are over-painted, changed to the point of unrecognisability, colonised by some weird imaginary landscapes. Sometimes the artist will integrate a single architectural element into a new picture, which often produces absurd contrasts. Isn’t the Poreč tower something now like a jail, isn’t Bled suddenly just like Manhattan?

Ana Dević- catalogue “Untitled (As Yet)“

The specific carnival-type experience of everyday social surroundings in the works of Vedran Perkov is realised through the appropriation, processing and recontextualisation of a broad range of popular culture. Perkov uses icons from the mass entertainment industry and consumer society as models for the realisation of various hybrid objects and environments where in their global iconographic recognisabiliti is confronted with a specific type of domesticated ubiquitous kitsch.
Authorial intervention is in evidence both in the reinterpretation of a motif and in its culturo-logical shift to a specific socio-political area, which determines is to a great extent.
Perkov explores the critical potential of signs, icons and symbols that have become exhausted, emptied of their original meaning due to excessive use. New meanings are shaped on the fringes, as the by-products of their further consumption, as a value surplus of sorts, realised contrapuntally to the original functions of signs, which almost always designate values like optimism, heroism, entertainment, childlike purity… What is evident in Vedran Perkov’s work is a lack of this kind of affirmation; motifs like dwarfs, teddy bears, Batman, smiley or balloons, which are present in this artist’s work, are only seemingly attractive and funny.
The unease which these objects produce stems both from their vague aesthetic status and the feeling of violence they evoke, regardless of whether is committied on them or whether they perform it themselves. It is precisely this peculiar vagueness and the ambivalent character of Vedran’s works that create a dynamic field which indirectly reflect the thematic issues of various forms of forgery, censorship, repression of collective and individual traums, impoverishment and media manipulation.

YOU’LL NEVER GET TO HEAVEN (TRA-LA-LA)

2009

wood, light bulbs, wire, 800 x 310 x 110 cm

group exhibition which presents some of the most important authors of Croatian contemporary art and with them a few younger artists

to be elected to the elite group brings an obligation to justify this fact

parody and the banality replace imposed spectacle

the typology of the inscription is identical to inscription HOLLYWOOD

star system and glamour are emptied with the title of the work and the message, without any sense

INSTANT MONUMENT

2008 – 2009

wood, plaster panels, bricks, 170 x 170 x 200 cm; mirror, 100 x 200 cm

last few years one of the topics that attracted my attention are monuments, their meaning, role and purpose

the system of excellence and values

reasons for decision to raise a monument to someone

anyone can climb the stairs and enter in the pedestal

by being inside and exposed one becomes part of the installation

work gives a sense of glory and importance

the mirror is placed opposite construction so we can see how monument suite us

instant glory and fame-instant monument

work also examines the settings and the meaning of sculpture

INSTALLATION AT 18th STREET ARTS CENTER, SANTA MONICA, USA

2008

for the event of opening of the exhibition «War as the Way of Life» I have decided to create a work that will reflect some of my views on subjects such as war

I didn’t want to make work that speaks directly about the horrors of war; killing, dying, sorrow and pain

for me the most terrifying things are the way people are convinced to hate each other; how the intolerance grows, what the consequences are and how deeply those things remain in your life

mechanisms which are used to reach this goal are almost always the same and with my work I wanted to point some of them

IN HOC SIGNO VINCES (The Flag)

Latin- In This Sign You Shall Conquer

aluminum foil, 190 x 120 cm

one of the first things is creating the national unity, raising pride and sense of glory, belonging to a specific group, nationality, population

in this case I used the flag as a mark of belonging

we identify with a nationalistic icon, it becomes your trademark; by being born in certain place we assume identity of it

I created a metal, anonymous flag, it can be any flag of the world

you can identify with it

by assuming one particular identity you are expected to reject any other

the title is in Latin, and this phrase was used during the Crusades wars, when the Christians fought against the Muslims (the infidels ones)

no mater what the cause, you are supposed to act as expected

LULLABY

power horns, sound, 51 min, loop

raising the feeling of belonging is subject of this work

I used National anthems that are played one after another

I also made a choice of the words from these anthems, extracting only beautiful words such as love, freedom, liberty, happiness, glory

those words are supposed to make us more aware of our identity

the choice of National anthems that I used for this work are: only anthems of those countries that had war or arm conflict from 1990 till now

I decided to use year 1990 as a point of departure (same year the Berlin wall was destroyed, time when we celebrated the end of Cold War, year that was supposed to be start of new era, peace era)

fact: from 1945- 1989 there were 114 war conflicts in the world, from 1990 until now we had 70 and 32 are ongoing (by Wikipedia)

number of wars, in post- Cold War period is doubled

how wrong we were

PURIFICATION

aluminum foil, cans, straws, cardboard, LED light

another step that happen is extraction of every non wanted element

after extraction we try to get rid of them

everyone who is different is unwanted (by race, color, religion, or someone that think different, intellectuals, dissidents…)

for this work I created showers

instead of water you have rays of light that «illuminate», «purify» you

the setting evokes Nazi Concentration Camps, where instead of water, gas was used

SAFE FROM HARM

aluminum foil, tape

a fence is surrounding you

after all these beautiful things that are promised (love, happiness, freedom…) you are in the ambiance that limits you

closed, trapped

limits are both intellectual and personal

lack of basic freedom, lack of choice

by the promise of keeping you safe and protected you are controlled, imprisoned

I have used everyday materials to create works

those that you can buy in every grocery store. In this way I wanted to show how much these manipulation is infected and part of our life; how the things such as hate, intolerance, non- understanding are becoming a way of life

INSTALLATION AT 18th STREET ARTS CENTER SANTA MONICA, USA_video

BASTION (five stars)

2008

iron, fabric, wood, plastic

sculpture-in-the-open exhibition

Cornaro bastion is famous as being derelict and devastated space in the town center mainly used by prostitutes and heroin addicts

I have placed three beds with brightly colored baldachins

this works deals with tourism as an excuse for any urban devastation, camouflaged by creating comfort and categorization (5 stars)

I’m exploring relations between art and artists and the everyday users of this space

INSTANT MONUMENT

2008

print 20 x 30 cm, each, video, 7′ 48”

 

I have made a photo documentation of the different, existing monuments

every monument was dedicated to some historical figure (there are no allegorical representation such as Freedom, Justice, an unknown hero … or fictional characters)

based on photographs I have made a three-dimensional drawings

the model of each pedestal is called by the name of the person that is actually on the monument (e.g. MODEL_001_CHRISTOPHER, MODEL_002_GIUSEPPE …)

fifteen different models of pedestals

exhibition presents prints of each model and video animation

animation is created in a way that each of the models is displayed as a drawing and its versions in materials such as granite, marble…

work is treated as a kind of advertising, catalogue

pedestal models offer the choice, everyone can choose the desired one made in material that prefers

 

INSTANT MONUMENT_video

GOLF CAR

2008

iron, wood, 300 x 250 x 250 cm

work is completed for the exhibition which was conclusion of three-year art events on the island Zlarin held in Zagreb, the capital of Croatia

lately Zlarin, among others, received the title of Golf Car island,
on an island without cars, today we have over 25 vehicles for the golf but no golf course, not even one hole

the first such vehicle were brought by a local immigrant working in the USA, for help around the field, household and other activities, to facilitate in late years

shortly after the second “American” brings his own , then the third one, fourth…

soon after the arrival of first few cars, starts the game of prestige among the standard white golf cars, are now red, gray, gold… with most modern design

golf car has become the subject of debate, taunt, comments… usually no one is indifferent to a subject

for the exhibition I have create an object that by its form is reminiscent the golf car

object is made in the manner of arbour, bench

after the exhibition the work is set in Zlarin within the children’s playground, with swings and slides as yet another device for playing and games to hot watches

all the above served as a pretext review the situation, context, meaning and understanding

in spite its form (it is obvious this is installation, sculpture) work presented at the prestigious gallery remains unclear if the visitor does not understand the context of which the work was based, equally as for citizens of Zlarin are incomprehensible artistic interventions that occur every summer

EVERYTHING IN ITS RIGHT PLACE

2008

plaster panels, wood, sound, light

 

coming back from the residence in New York, I had a solo exhibition as a winner of Radoslav Putar award

the exhibition is supposed to reflect the New York experience

I have built the corridor within the exhibition space that lead to the storage of the gallery

I have left all of the objects in the storage as they were, without any intervention or changing the setting

I have built the wooden ceiling through which light could be seen, and sound could be heard

the sound was recorded during one of the high-brow exhibition openings in New York

creation of false spectacle and high expectations eventually leads the visitor to the unrepresentative setting of the storage, where he/she is left to him/herself

personal and social position is stressed here, that includes irony

the work deals with relations within art, the question of center and province, of inherent and imposed mystification and glorification of the center

after spending two months in such a center, coming back to reality can be seen as a failure, but at the same time as relief because everything is where it should be

 

everything_in_its_right_place– audio

PENALTY KICKS

2007

video, loop, TV, crates of beer, beer

video shows penalty kicks performed by several men, while I, in the role of the goalkeeper, am trying to save the penalty kicks

the actions are taking turn fast while music is played in the background

constant repetition

the viewer can help himself with a beer and sit on one of the crates, creating a feeling of comfort

the problem of my own position as an individual/artist is presented through the undesirable position of a goalkeeper

although I have a very modest knowledge of football, typically male thing, by playing it I create a feeling of acceptance and belonging

criticism of gender stereotypes, the rules of mass games and imposed values

WE ARE THE ONLY TWO MEN AT THE EXHIBITION, RADOSLAV

2007

styrofoam,plaster, wood, cardboard, 420 x 60 x 60 cm

the Jury of this year’s edition of Radoslav Putar Award consists of five women who have selected four finalists among whom three of them are women

to be minority / isolation

problem of emancipation in hands of emancipated group

on the other hand I apply typically male approach

producing the bust and placing it in the very center of exhibiting space

making it significant, creating it pompous / personality cult, heroism

phallic form / totem, symbol of adoring

accentuated male position

title of the work is twofold – can be understood as a macho statement and in the same time it offers ascertainment of slight panic

usage of colloquial language and slang to stress belonging to the same group

work refers to relations burdened by social, sex and gender, ideological and traditional differences

prejudices

exclusivity of certain groups, intolerance, creating

the system of values within those groups

ARC 2000

2007

wood, cement blocks, fabric, sponge, 350 x 120 x 120 cm

an unidentified vehicle

the name, the mode of presentation and its equipment lead to the conclusion that it must be a luxurious product

its placement on cement blocks makes it impossible to move

thematic connection to the Biblical story (the title, intention of carrying two people, a couple) is brought to the absurd

YOU GOT IT!

2007

in the multipurpose Gallery venue which, at the same time, serves as a library, three types of slot machines are placed: poker machines, video games and pinball machines

the venue is a sort of a living room for its regular visitors – pensioners, who pass their time in reading daily newspapers

reading as a pastime, entertainment and fun

addiction to news they no longer participate in, but are only consumers, is placed within a context of addition to fun and finding ways to pass free time

the works are presented as some kind of monuments or busts in a museum

the monuments to people who have become machines with strictly determined set of values

FULL BONUS

2007

wood, 180 x 150 x 60 cm, each

wooden objects that seem like coffins with tombstones

full bonus is a final winning in pinball that the players try to achieve, and reach the score that will allow them to continue playing

despite of the effort, defeat and loss are inevitable

FIVE OF A KIND

2007

plaster, 35 x 35 x 33 cm, each

forms of poker machines are made of plaster of Paris painted gold, set as busts, portraits of historically and culturally important people

the title comes from the winning combination

five unified casts are left unfinished, you can see some differences

wrong and superficial understanding, generalization

HIGH SCORE

2007

wood, veneer, plaster of Paris, 250 x 130 x 100 cm

a video game console made of plaster of Paris set as a monument

over dimension to stress monumentality

the names of the best players are memorized in the machines until they are replaced by a better player

SHELTER

2006

cardboard, 192 x 198 x 284 cm

a cardboard reconstruction of a family shelter (Family Fallout Shelter- the manual for construction with detailed instructions, photos and drawings can be found on the Internet)

three situations that inspired me to create this work

situation 1:

the building of today’s Art Gallery in certain period was an orphanage

the fact that not one of its wards lived to the age of 18

situation 2:

surfing the Internet I have found advertising pages of a company producing small family fallout shelters

in the promotional material there is a picture of a mother looking at her children playing
inside the latest model of the fallout shelter

situation 3:

behind my apartment building, in the lot, the neighborhood children at play, are
constantly building cardboard houses, shelters
when rain or wind destroys one, they start building a new one

detachment from dimensions, selection of fragile material, form and condition of work, dialogue
between stories and situations, reveals nonsense ( an orphanage offering no safety… a fallout shelter
as a play room and idyllic family room… a shelter which can’t withstand a puff of wind…)

the emphasis of the inability to fulfill the elementary purpose leaves some space for personal interpretation

NIKOLA TESLA – proposal for a monument

2006

project, 10 prints

the exhibition was organized on the occasion of 150 years of Nikola Tesla’s birth, at a time of political debate on the way of celebrating that anniversary and the controversial attitude towards Nikola Tesla

dispute on whether to place the monument in Zagreb or Smiljan

I suggested that the already existing sculpture created by Ivan Meštrović, one of the greatest Croatian sculptors, should simply be cut in half and each part should be placed in each of the locations

due to the symmetry of the original sculpture it should be enough to place the mirror next to the existing half and not to lose anything of the visual whole

series of different interventions were proposed – to use some expensive materials, an interactive fountain, laser illumination, golden ornaments … just to mend the thing that cannot be mended and show how much we care

THE THINGS THAT DREAMS ARE MADE OF

2006

spacial installation consisting of four elements: intergalactic spacecraft, two spacesuits and an inscription, the same as the title of the exhibition that dominates over the set works

the setting reminds of some car show, exhibition of some fashion and technological achievements or some historic museum (the gallery where the exhibition was held was formerly a museum of revolution)

the works are left technically imperfect, and together with the titles parody themselves, stressing the incapability of fulfilling its basic purpose

all the elements at the exhibition were taken at an association level; endless universe is similar to endless imagination, dreams

THE FINAL FRONTIER

2005

nylon, 150 x 250 x 70 cm

a nylon model of the Voyage spacecraft from the popular Star Trek series, hangs from the ceiling of the gallery

obvious seams can be seen at the places where different parts of the spacecraft were joined together

the air is pumped in through a hose attached to the base of the sculpture, giving it volume

cobbled up seams leak air on all sides

as much as it may look like a spacecraft it is in fact inflated balloon full of holes

the work is a criticism of the illusion of power and progress, of superficiality wrapped up and presented as a brilliant achievement

LE VOYAGE INFINITIF

2005

cardboard, wood, 280 x 170 x 70 cm each

“Le Voyage Infinitif” installation is analogous to „The Final Frontier“ installation, both presented at the same exhibition

two coloured planes are dropped, grounded at the floor of the gallery

cardboard planes, barely put together, were left unfinished, only coated in decorative foil, creating an illusion of the supreme achievement

endless, eternal journey, ended before it even begun

both installations have the form and condition of the presented objects as a crucial factor

the meaning of the icons of the progress, modernism, power (planes, spacecraft) is reversed; the atmosphere of failure is accentuated

2005

wood, cement, 240 x 80 x 80 cm

a bench was set in the middle of the creek

in order to reach the bench one had to put some effort in and get wet

the bench is big enough only to hold one person, giving an opportunity to isolate, to become an island

the bench has one inscription carved in: „THE WATER FLOWS BY, BUT SAYS NOTHING“ in Croatian and Latvian

self- imposed isolation, social and intellectual

HOMO VOLANS

2004

parachute, video stills

a parachute was placed on a tree in the very centre of the town, at a busy spot between the post office and a shopping mall, simulating the tragic fall of the unknown sky-diver

in the course of the day, the reactions of the passers-by were recorded

relating human tragedy and art work, or the interest they rise

human misfortune as a best-selling product

the work was an hommage to Faust Vrančić, inspired by the first invention of parachute

the setting of the work coincided with the World parachute championship, which made the situation more convincing

TRASH

2004

plastic bags, trash

bags filled with garbage were set in the historical centre of Split

the bags were filled with the garbage left after the setting of the works by other artists at the exhibition, garbage from the curator’s house, from the archives of the Croatian Artists’ Association Split (exhibition organization), and the garbage I had collected in the Basement of the Diocletian’s palace and at the town centre

identification of the artistic, intellectual and organizational to the everyday life

creation and consumption set in an equal relation through the by-products of both actions – waste

the title of the work shows criticism of relation towards art and culture, towards creativity, and to the cultural and historical heritage

work also deals with the contemporary ecological subjects

CIRCUS

2004

gauze, rope, iron, balloons, 340 cm, diameter 200 cm

in a colorful environment, filled with balloons, there is a tent made of gauze

on the opening night, the balloons cover the ceiling of the room, creating a festive, carnival-like atmosphere

after some time, the balloons fall on the floor, and gradually deflate; they become the remains of the celebration

the tent offers isolation, but this isolation is insufficient to protect and maintain the privacy of its inside, because of the transparent gauze; the influence of the outside on the inside

IN FOUR LINES

2004

plaster, 40 pieces, 70 cm each

forty garden gnomes made form plaster, set in four rows, facing the corner of the gallery

likable, kitsch objects, by the way in which they are set (like a military group) and even more by the title of the work evoke associations of violence

the title additionally emphasizes the historical and social context connected with the problematic of the interpretation of history

questioning the topics of tragedy and violence that are through various manipulations and interpretations, either political or artistic, brought on the verge of kitsch

CALL ME ANYTIME YOU NEED

2000

wood, 30 x 30 x 100 cm, projector, switch

a sign and a red switch are placed on a wooden pedestal

a projector is turned on by pressing the switch which then projects the Batman sign on the wall

the work ironically plays with the topics of violence, alienation, (non)security

using the Batman sign and the red switch as trademarks of the same topics

THE BEAST

2004

iuta, hay

over-sized children’s toy, the shabby teddy bear takes up a large part of the gallery space

the claustrophobic atmosphere and the condition of the teddy bear create discomfort and pose the question whether the teddy bear is a beast or is itself an object of a bestiality

UNTITLED

2003

wood, wire, 250 x 250 x 180 cm

around a bench that is situated on a famous promenade, in an idyllic ambient with a beautiful view, a cage is set

a passer-by can freely open the door, enter and sit on the bench

there is a lock inside the cage

a person in the cage can willfully lock himself/herself inside, imprison and isolate himself/herself

the work questions the relationship of freedom and captivity, asks the question of who is freer, the person in prison or the one outside of it

the question of personal freedom in the context of social norms, rules and laws

being the prisoner of our own or imposed decisions, limits and perspectives

HAPPINESS

2003

paper, rope, balloons

the staircase of the gallery is filled with red pieces of paper as if they were falling from the ceiling

smileys are printed on the papers

red squares inspired by the national coat of arms and the smiling face; raining happiness and patriotism, happy and self-conscious of our national background

THE RED ONES, THE WHITE ONES AND THE BLUE ONES

2003

polyvinyl, rope

the installation is composed of flags that fill and cram the entire exhibition space

the psychedelic ambient reminds of the atmosphere of folk festivals

the use of the colors of the national anthem emphasize the togetherness felt in such occasions

only the title of the work shows ambivalence

the work is set in a part of the Diocletian Palace where slaves were once held

EVERYTHING IS CLEAR

2002

fabric, wood, rope

commercial banners are put up in the hallway, instead of placing messages on them, they are blank

communicating without any message or information

emptiness of communication, the nonexistent content of a message

DON’T WORRY, EVERYTHING IS UNDER CONTROL

2002

700 x 300 cm, fabric, styrofoam, reproductions 60 x 40 cm each

the installation is composed of a red background on which a sign and two reproductions of sacral paintings dominate

the way in which the work is set is based on political and propaganda aesthetics; the setting reminds us of the setting of communist school events, syndicate and party gatherings

the Orwell-like sign “DON’T WORRY, EVERYTHING IS UNDER CONTROL” can be understood in two ways, as bringing trust or creating an illusion of order on one hand, and symbolizing “higher force” control on the other

the sacral paintings emphasize both interpretations of the sign

the contradicting elements instead of “explaining” each other put us the borderline of sense, leaving us without a logical interpretation of the work i.e. our “control” over the work

THE GUARD TOWER

2002

golden chocolate paper

the abandoned penal colony from the communist period on Goli otok

during summer it becomes an artist colony and tourist destination

there is a guard tower behind the quarry in which prisoners worked

the guard tower is warped in chocolate paper

ironic commentary of the “romantic” feeling of the island experienced by the artists and tourists; the true purpose of the place is showed when the decorative paper is unwrapped

STILL LIFE

2002

plastic, cardboard

the gallery is painted in red, lit in red lights, sunflowers in pots are placed allover the room and viewers can walk freely among them, a quotation from Clint Eastwoood’s “Dirty Harry” dominates the wall

in this psychedelic atmosphere, the viewer is integrated into the work

identification of the viewers and the associations inspired by the sunflowers

the quotation directly addresses the viewer

the work also reflects on the problems of art itself, the rethinking of traditional and contemporary and the contradictions between them

the topic is emphasized by the title of the work “Still Life”

YOU KNOW WHAT I MEAN

2001

plastic, wire, sensor

three eyes that are watching from the wall

when the viewer comes close to the wall, one eye winks at him/her

establishing contact-relationship between the viewer and the work trough the title of the work and trough action itself

three eyes; unnatural, mutation, genetic manipulation

to be seen, controlled; surveillance cameras, reality show, loss of privacy

eyes plucked from children’s puppets, violence, conflict, wars, human rights

WHAT’S UP, DOC?

2000

fabric, 295 x 370 cm, carrot

the flag, with its form and color, evokes the communist period

instead of the quotations of the great communist leaders, there is a Bugs Bunny’s quotation

there is an “erected” carrot behind the flag

the situation in post-communistic countries …

the politics of stick and carrot

a wish for a change of the system and life style…

a wish for an integration into a different system

delusion, desolation

THE LAST…

2000

plastic, wood, 96 x 190 cm

a commercial form and the slogan

reflection on topics as the market, consumption, commercial strategies…in daily life and artistic production

propaganda of art and of artistic work

WE ATTEMPT…

2000

print, cardboard 43 x 551 cm

the work is made for group exhibitions of young artists

the sign foresees a catastrophe

reflection on the way in which young, unestablished artists and their works are presented

about the status, hopes and fears

MARCEL SAID…

2000

project

after being asked to create a work that would show the influence of Marcel Duchamp, I sent a photo negative with instructions for further realization to the gallerist

when the negative is developed, we see a portrait of Marcel Duchamp and a Forrest Gump (simpatico fool) quotation, that is presented as being Duchamp’s

about the often exaggerated misinterpretation of Marcel Duchamp

ORGASMIC CHILL

1999

rabbit bones, puffed rice, TV, silk

deconsecrated St. Francesco Church, Como, Italy

the table is put on the place where the altar once stood

the television screen showing the Vilendorf Venus together with puffed rice and rabbit bones are set on the table

primal functions are meanings, that by transformation receive a different form and meaning are exchanged

a consumption of a myth, a transformation into an object

emphasizing sexuality

FOUR, FOUR

1998

four hundred and four different words in English language

each word is comprised of four letters

each fourth word is “four”

monotonous, bureaucratic rhythm

the words loose their meaning

there are four forms of the work

FILE

– a list of all words that were used
– the fact

BOOK

– one word on each page

– each word is information in itself

– it is not possible to make associations and

connections between words

– a reader is only a passive consumer

VIDEO

– each word appears on the screen for a second

– there is enough time to read and understand the word, but because of constant, fast exchange of words (“bombing”) there is not enough time to remember the words
– a viewer is only a passive consumer

COMPUTER

– words appear on the computer screen as they do on the video

– it is possible to interrupt the program and enter the file in which one can make changes in the pattern of words and thus affect the order in which they appear on the screen

– there is a possibility of creating one’s own version of the work

– the viewer is no longer a passive consumer, but is able to create his/her own “facts” and “truths”

– data are manipulated with by using various media

UNTITLED

1998

iron bed, newspapers

a metal construction of the bed, which reminds of a prison or a hospital bed, is set in a claustrophobic environment

previous layers of paint are seen on the walls, fragments from newspapers (photos, articles…) are glued onto the walls, symbolizing different layers of memory

melancholy and alienation

closing in one’s own prison or hospital

the impossibility of communication

WELCOME

1997

carpet, wood, projection

the red carpet leads us from the entrance to the exit

the projection of the sign WELCOME is barely seen in the well lit space in the room

the two welcoming elements negate themselves, the carpet directs us to the exit, while the welcome sign is almost invisible

relationships among people, lack of communication

WELCOME IN

1996

fabric

the carpet leads us to the door and closes the door at the same time

the welcome symbol negates itself