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Biljana Bakaluca

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 Vucic Cetkovic 

Björn Dämpfling

 

 

26.02.- 23.03.2016
Quintessence

Vucic Cetkovic

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

   

 

   

 

   

 


The artist creates a work by following his nature, his instinct.
Emil Nolde

The need for art which originates from the man’s unconscious is most commonly interpreted in the context of the liberation of man’s cognitive and spiritual values, as well as individual laws of painting. The artist’s creative impulse comes from the spaces which lie outside experience, which is why the creation of a work of art was once regarded as a divine gift shrouded in unfathomable secrets. These premises can be linked to the phenomenon of artistic creation in general but I make reference to them as an introduction to the discourse devoted to the art of Vučić Ćetković, a man educated as an economist but who is inly a painter tirelessly searching for a visual language which would enable him to express his thoughts and feelings. It is the need for art that represents the essence of his inner self.
Despite the fact that he is still in search of a distinct creative identity in his artistic expression, Ćetković has tackled the complex existential and ontological dimension of a work of art. This statement is based upon the artist’s sources of inspiration which belong to the spheres of abstract empathy. Let us recall his exhibition accompanying the performance of Olivier Messiaen’s Quartet for the End of Time (Quatuor pour la fin du temps) . To offer a visual representation of the musical piece inspired by The Book of Revelation, Chapter 10, verses 1-7 ̶ The Apocalypse was a big challenge for the artist. Thanks to the creative freedom resting on the subjective truth and emotions, intellectual preconditions, conceptual solutions and artistic interpretation, he translated the composition inspired by the essential biblical message into a visual work of art. The music shaping time like harmonica mundi was translated into the language of painting shaping the space into which the artist brings his creative ideas. The eight movements this musical piece consists of were interpreted in eight paintings. The dominant feature of these paintings is the black or grey background as a vacuum – space filled with the vision of the artist who creates compositions based upon abstraction or figuration depending on his personal experience. What dominates in them are rigid rectilinear variations: vertical, horizontal or diagonal lines which create rhythmically harmonized and dynamically defined wholes simulating the third dimension. Lines are also present in his figural compositions in which the human face is defined with a contour line, while the image of Jesus in a divine liturgy appears as an illusion emerging from the unfathomable spheres of the universe.
The paintings belonging to this cycle are presented as a segment in the exhibition Quintessence. This term determines the fifth element – aether – an abstract substance, quintessence, comprised of all elements of the universe. This substance is also the essence, the core of things. The question arising is whether the name of the exhibition hides the artist’s intention to express the inner essence of his creative self through cosmic energy. This paradigm is indicated by visual solutions of his paintings in which Ćetković usually expresses his spiritual enlightenment through linear sensations simulating the energetic frequency and vibration of the universe. They dominate the paintings created in the artistic language relying on the heritage of geometric abstraction, while the most prominent features of the paintings characterized by lyrical abstraction, made while he was going through the phase inspired by Pollock’s action painting known as drip painting, are harmonious and rhythmically harmonized coloristic orchestrations, in which a solitary black line occasionally appears representing the direction, the path, the motion and the reflexion of the artist’s emotions.
A special series of works as the third segment of the exhibition comprises drawings (graphite, charcoal, mixed media) as the artist’s self-sufficient expression with no intention of being transferred to another medium. These works include abstract forms, figurative forms and motifs from nature. They reveal Ćetković’s sense of a harmonious blend of precise lines and the warmth of sfumato shadows and half-shadows, with frottage structures, with which he veneers the form, thus achieving the effect of multiple plastic and structural layers.
I am interested in various forms, structures and phenomena which can be found in nature and in our immediate environment, even though they are often hidden or invisible – says Vučić Ćetković, whose fondness for experimentation opens up new creative spaces which enrich his artistic expression. Finally, he is an artist who has exhibited his work in a number of solo and group exhibitions in Montenegro, Austria, Great Britain and France and who is characterized by creative seriousness and maturity which place him among young and up-and-coming Montenegrin artists with a promising future ahead of them.

Ljiljana Zeković
art historian