ANDRIJANA MLINAREVIĆ CVETKOVIĆ
Ode to the joy of life
16.11. – 30.11.2009.
Artworks of Andrijana Mlinarević – Cvetković are the expression of freedom and tolerance of the artistic activity. They are not burdened with the rules of art and are imbued with deep emotionality. The young artist, the Master of Fine Arts, does not define her creativity within certain conventional categories of art, yet she unifies in her expression diverse guidelines of visual art practice.
In her last exhibition she has presented herself to Zagreb audience with all aspects of her artistic expression in painting and spatial installations and reliefs that is, a hybrid of painting and sculpture solutions. Although her artworks are derived from different materials and, consequently, are conditioned by different laws, they all can be brought under the common denominator. Consolidated by identical poetics and creative impulse, these works introduce us to her private world that she has built from the very beginning of her artistic activity. According to the author's words, she is creatively driven by small things, childhood memories and therefore she has expressed preference towards emphasized emotionality and intimacy since her early works. She gently records experienced moments, remembered or imaginary situations, family and friendly gatherings, or moments which are seemingly irrelevant and without connotation - all that through characters and composition refined by a smile, while the homeland and childhood are easily seen as a basic thread of her reflections. By experimenting with different materials and forms and with total technological freedom, she tries to visualize innocent and sincere vision of the world – present entirely and without a burden only in child's play.
It is also important to emphasize the pedagogical function that Andrijana Mlinarević - Cvetković equally intensely performs and which affects the very artist in very stimulating and educational way. Not only that she upgrades her own poetics through cohabitation with children and their creativity, but she also sets them as a role model. In such form of cooperation and learning, creativity is encouraged in both directions so Andrijana's inspiration turns out to be inexhaustible just like children's imagination.
Painting world of Andrijana Mlinarević - Cvetković is especially imbued with family tenderness and impressions of her homeland. These scenes arise from family albums and memories called "Gardens of my childhood" in which the human segment is indispensable and imposed in the foreground. Characters of elongated shape, wistful and bleary-eyed, dominate dispersed and flown up areas where different creatures and items intervene. Impression of motion and seemingly spontaneous composition is skillfully made by the relationship of static human figure and heaving background. Perspective and compositional relations do not have the role of transfer of what is real, but are in service of painting's autonomy and creation of special surreal and extraordinary atmosphere, which is supported by the narrow palette range of blue-gray tones with a few yellow or red accents. Tenderness of softened forms joint with subdued colors has made a lyrical encounter of the real world and the world recalled from the imagination. These strongly associative paintings of a happy childhood and protection in the parents’ arms can be experienced as an intimate diary, or as an attempt to preserve a part of child's worldview deep inside.
Inclination towards extraordinary combinations of painting and sculpture and unusually expressed anatomical modifications has occurred to Andrijana since her early works. We have the opportunity to see some of them at this exhibition. Artworks from the cycle "Playful World" are the symbiosis of the flatness of painting and three-dimensional sculpture. Through dense and non-transparent color layer deprived of toning she creates two-dimensional spaces which acquire third dimension through relief inserts of various materials, especially pieces of wood. She stays thematically loyal to the playful characters in motion spaces, dynamically emphasizing certain aspects of the composition. Her artworks brusquely step out into space using a number of items she found in her surroundings, such as parts of children's dolls, wires, and toothpicks. Through these items she plastically visualizes and underlines the rawness of her expression. Special relief cycle is composed of reflexive triptych on woman’s stages: a girl, a bride and a pregnant woman. The artist uses wooden surface on which she builds women's attributes like red shoes, wedding veil, maternity belly or women's purse. With the equal sense of detail as in her paintings, she rounds up the whole with decorative prints of lacy materials.
In Andrijana's last works her creative process is expressed with the same intensity in the new dimension. In search of a greater freedom and creativity, the artist has made a breakthrough into a new medium. Wire has become a basic material through which she expresses herself and builds spatial installations. By skilful shaping of a wire, which she sometimes combines with other materials such as metal nets, sheet metal, plaster, smaller painting canvases or different items she found, she creates very interesting series of spatial installations. These are lavish figural compositions composed of several smaller units of animal and human figures. Kinds of spatial drawings composed in the inspiration of game are mobile and easily adaptable to spatial givens. Through the touch of fingers with the wire artist releases stories about anthropomorphic animals that pass through the world of flying houses and fascinating butterflies, about children playing near lakes made of densely intertwined wire or tree tops full of plaster fruit, about round dash of clouds and oversized ants that climb a wall while creating expressive shadows . In her work with children and children's drawings, the artist has found the ability to set priorities and (over)emphasize chosen qualities. In that world of reduced forms, expressiveness and the mood are often evident in facial expressions, but there is also a notable entry of additional elements such as grandma's carpet, children's shoes or balls that strengthen the artistic suggestiveness of the form. Although created as three-dimensional objects, these spatial installations do not require affirmation of the sculpture. Their main expressive mean is a wire, which aims at the drawing and emphasizes one-dimensional structure of the form.
In the new media Andrijana's creative enthusiasm became more dynamic and intense. Wire proved to be a rewarding material that matches the childlike and carefree vision which artist easily transmits through the lightness of her artistic expression into free and untrammeled compositions.
Andrijana Mlinarević – Cvetković shows enviable skill of creative interweaving of several art disciplines. She is equally skilled in coping with the world of paintings and sculptures that is, physically layered reliefs and spatial installations. Through various creative cycles Andrijana has managed to maintain high expressiveness, while achieving significant stylistic balance. By the recent spatial installations she has confirmed her artistic identity, and its continuous ability to upgrade. Meager material such as wire does not present a limitation to Andrijana but the imaginative extension of her artistic expression. The idea of new Andrijana's works which have the power to withdraw into seductive vision of imagination and childhood is definitely something worth looking forward to.