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Žiga Kariž / BEAUTY 73 (09)

18 December 2009 > 15 January 2010

The exhibition entitled BEAUTY 73 (09) is forming the LJUBLJANA TRILOGY together with the last year’s exhibition PARADISE LOST (OPEN CODE) (Kapsula Gallery, 2008) and the exhibition THE PAINTER 73 (Ganes Pratt Gallery), opening the day before on Thursday 17th December 2009 at 7 pm at Ganes Pratt Gallery.
Kindly invited you to both openings!


"The seventies was the time enticing nostalgia, the time posing for nostalgia, the time anticipating nostalgia of itself. The seventies were nostalgic of the seventies. The seventies themselves were their own revival. In the film, television, comics, fashion, design, glam. Those, growing up in the seventies were buying their own childhood before it’s arrived on the market. No memory, not even the most fleeting one, was only transient."

The collaboration with the artist Žiga Kariž started ten years ago when we invited him to the painting visual arts project entitled Terror-Decor.
Žiga Kariž belongs to the generation of the artists vital for the formation of the Alkatraz Gallery - the generation of the seventies: the generation of hope and great breakthroughs, of the time when life was impregnated with colourfulness, optimism, pre-anticipated nostalgia and the "concept" of society's development.

At the exhibition entitled BEAUTY 73 (09), forming the LJUBLJANA TRILOGY together with the last year's exhibition PARADISE LOST (OPEN CODE) (Kapsula Gallery, 2008) and the exhibition THE PAINTER 73 (Ganes Pratt Gallery), the artist returns as a collector of visual material from the time of his childhood. Here the visual sensibility represents the essential continuation of the artistic language Kariž has already outlined in the beginning, maintaining, developing and unfolding this thread ever since. The artist himself admits that he was, in his youth, a big consumer of popular culture ranging from comics to films. Popular culture was the key element of crucial impact on the artist's perception of the image of the world. Marcel Štefančič, in his biography about Janez Janša through his description of the growing up of Žiga Kariž exposes an interesting story about his perception of images. The artist's interest in music as such was not substantial. His perception of this artistic form was strongly related to the image. Speaking of music, his favourite was film music as it is directly connected to the image and does not exist for its own sake. The installation BEAUTY 73 (09) has been designed for the space of the Alkatraz Gallery. The thematic set of images alternating on television screens makes associations to the time of transition from the sixties to the eighties. It is a personal view forming a picture put together from the particles of collective memory through the quest for the past-memorizing-essence of a certain generation.

The thematic sets are allocated according to their colour and composition ranging from the motives from nature to the construction of utopian metropoles and further, of the world from Lego blocks, with film characters and "the seventies' generation" heroes strolling among them. Visuality of the BEAUTY 73 (09) is upgraded by the visuality of the project entitled PARADISE LOST (OPEN CODE). Everyone chooses his or her own memory incarnations, re-collecting and evoking the images from the timely distanced, yet to a certain generation, personal world of remembrance.

Selecting the idealized world, the artist deconstructs the image by the invasion of reality, accentuated by the rawness of the exhibition space itself where beauty loses its power and is left to the moment of identification with a singular spectator, establishing his or her relation to the memory/picture/image through observation. Kariž exposes the concept of perception of beauty and various ways of viewing of an object/perception of beauty. "Perception determines our space in the world that surrounds us./.../The relation between what we see and what we know is never settled" What we see and perceive depends on how our visual and mental concepts are educated. Ideology brings us certain constructs that are generally accepted. As such, we will probably take them in when they comply with our vision of the world.

Kariž's video installation incorporates the specificity and dialogue of the exhibition space by establishing a reflexive relation and constructing a field of interaction with the spectator. Thus the exhibition space becomes a frame, but not in the sense of a passive cloak around an isolated object - the object itself gets incorporated as an integral part of the shaping and action skills.

Jadranka Ljubičič

Thanks to: Moderna galerija Ljubljana & Pivovarna Union d.d.

Photo: Jasmina Klančar

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