Across The Line

Ivan Kožarić

Radmila Iva Jankoviæ; iva.rada.jankovic@msu.hr

from 09/2011

Radmila Iva Janković, Vladimir Čajkovac

Museum of Contemporary Art Zagreb

The statement of Ivan Kožariæ ‘I always present truth to the audience. I am naked and do not hide anything. I give all that is intimately happening within’ has proven to be true in its most literal sense. For Kožariæ has kept almost nothing from the contents of his studio before the studio was sold. From artworks to private belongings, it was all part of the same creative chaos. The idea for this show has emerged from the intention to show a large portion of the opus that still remains unknown to the wider audience. The smaller portion of drawings, works on paper, but also some paintings and prints on varied surfaces including textile or gesso boards, was on display when the Studio was transferred to Zvonimir Gallery, along with the artist, of course, who temporarily changed his address and continued his work at the gallery venue. In 2002, his studio changed address once again: it was moved to Kassel for Documenta 11, down to the last artefact. The majority of works on paper and other surfaces however remained scattered and piled up; closed in cardboard maps or inside the furniture. The decision to present the works Kožariæ, known primarily as a sculptor, in different media, including sketches, notes for sculpture displays, drawing-palimpsests, concepts for projects finished and unfinished offered the possibility of taking a closer look into a creative process of an artist whose art philosophy has meant being constantly at variance with oneself, continually starting from the beginning both of which have become synonymous with the vitality and boundless creative energy of the artist called Bright Sisyphus.
Ivan Kožariæ was born on June 10th 1921 in Petrinja. Despite the chance to perhaps launch a European career, Kožariæ ‘run away from successes and returned to Zagreb joining the informal pre-conceptual group Gorgona (1959). He has had over one hundred solo exhibitions and has taken part in over two hundred group and theme-based exhibitions (Wilhelm Lembruck Museum Duisburg; XV. Biennale Sao Paulo; Museum of Contemporary Art Teheran; Magazzini del sale, Venice; Musee d’art Moderne de la Ville de Paris; Hirshorn Museum Washington; ZKM Karlsruhe….) His works are now displayed in many European and world collections of the contemporary art and also included in many reviews of the contemporary sculpture.
In 2007, the Municipal Department of Culture in Zagreb purchased the entire studio and gave it to the Museum of Contemporary Art in Zagreb for permanent management and maintenance. Ivan Kožariæ is today considered as one of the foremost contemporary Croatian artists.