The exhibition features the work of Emil Bobanović Ćolić, Vedran Grabovac, Jasmina Runje, Josip Škerlj and Nada Zec Ivanović. Professor Antun Karaman, the exhibition organiser and author of the catalogue foreword, spoke at the opening of this exhibition.
The Začarana šuma (“Enchanted Forest”) exhibition opened at the gallery of the Croatian Heritage Foundation branch office in Dubrovnik on 19 November featuring the work of Emil Bobanović Ćolić, Vedran Grabovac, Jasmina Runje, Josip Škerlj and Nada Zec Ivanović. Vedran Grabovac presented three avian sculptures in wood, Jasmina Runje presented four ink on paper drawings, Nada Zec Ivanović presented three oil on canvas diptychs, Emil Bobanović Ćolić presented four acrylic on paper works, and Josip Škerlj showcased four acrylic on canvas works.
Professor Antun Karaman, the exhibition organiser and author of the catalogue foreword, spoke at the opening of this exhibition. In his figurative remarks professor Karaman notes: The forest [is] dark, dense, secretive, self-regenerating and invasive (an aggressive conqueror of free space) – the forest [is] wild, enduring, more permanent that human life, wherever it grows: in the fertile river valley, on high plateaus, on the rocky slopes of mountains, in the equatorial expanses (rainforests), or in cold northern latitudes (the taiga, the Siberian and North American boreal/conifer forests), each is by and of itself a special and unique entity. In all the mythologies and religions of the world the forest is a prominent symbol of that which is wild, of complete freedom and unfettered primordial (and human) instincts, and in the unliteral, allegorical and metaphorical sense (in the psychological aspect) it denotes the human subliminal state and irrational behaviour. That is why the murky darkness of trackless forests and the uncertainty of their secrets has in similar or equal ways from time immemorial frightened (and continues to frighten today) all human communities, irrespective of the geographic characteristics of the environment in which a given forest grew (or still grows): in every forest the uncertainties are similar, and mythological and folk tales in all the cultures of the world are packed with similar beasts, monsters and supernatural beings born out of the many uncertainties, unfortunate and inexplicable events, from ignorance, and often from the frightening sounds produced by the forest at day and night. Fear, solitude, pain (and all manner of gloomy thoughts), and vulnerability and heaviness of spirit—flourish in the heart of the truly dark subliminal and even darker psychological forest, and human imagination—as horrible and dangerous as these things are—fans the flames, making it all even more horrible and threatening, breeding and rewarding these fears. All of this can be found and recognised in the works on exhibit here and in the hearts of the artists that are, of course, opened to us in confidence, with the hope that in the stories told in their work we will recognise at least a modicum of the truth that so often evades our attention.
The exhibition will be open to 3 December.
By: Maja Mozara