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ARCHIVE · 2007

photography, video

Ana Opalić
Ivana Pegan Baće
Ana Požar Piplica
Ivona Vlašić

Curated by Rozana Vojvoda
From December 22, 2007 until February 04, 2008

Ana OpalićA.O.
Ivana Pegan BaćeI.P.B.
Ana Požar PiplicaA.P.P.
Ivona Vlašić

It is not only their generation that links Ana Opalić, Ivana Pegan Baće, Ana Požar Piplica and Ivona Vlašić, four Dubrovnik women artists with various kinds of background (in photography, sculpting and painting), but also their long continued engagement in art with the landscape of the Dubrovnik area, not only as subject or motif, but at a much more complex and issue-laden level.
The phrase In a Landscape would tend to suggest involvement in the space, being inside, and it is just this situation that is the point of departure from which the forms of creativity presented at the exhibition take off and bifurcate.
Landscape in the artworks of these four artists is conditioned by their lasting sojourns within it, an active relationship that in the case of Ivona Vlašić and Ana Opalić, artists linked to the city by descent, leads practically to the appropriation of certain points of the Dubrovnik space and the treatment of them in series that represent a kind of work in progress.
In the case of Ivana Pegan Baće and Ana Požar Piplica the situation is a little diverse, for they arrived in the area later, and chose it as the arena for their life and creative activity, and in their rethinking of it take issue with their own human and artistic identities.
Apart from Ana Opalić, who is a photographer by vocation and training, all the women artists in this segment of their work have chosen the medium of photograph and video, simply because this allows them great liberty in taking up the issues related to landscape; monitoring the rhythm of the natural phenomena, as in the case with Ivona Vlašić, or experimentation with those elements that it is impossible to achieve in the medium of painting and sculpture, as with Ana Požar Piplica and Ivana Pegan Baće. 
The concern with the category of landscape in these artists shown here always includes some crucial existential issues: conceptually included as in the case of Ana Opalić, who speaks of the war through the scenes of the forest; or it is immanent but muted, as in the unobtrusive treatment of the social moment in recent videoworks by Ivona Vlašić. 
In the series of photographs Profiles (2005 / 2007) by Ana Požar Piplica, a series of self-portraits and portraits of persons close to her and members of the family in two settings: in that of Dubrovnik and in her birthplace of Knin, there is a search for the category of archetypal affiliation to the space. In that search we can sense an awareness of the increasing difficulty of establishing a human identity in a globalised and materialist world.
Presented photographs and videowork of Ivana Pegan Baće, in which there is a reduction of Dubrovnik landscape to abstract categories, we come upon an element of query concerning some of the seemingly solid foundations in the perception of reality. 
Considering a long continued engagement in art with the landscape of the Dubrovnik area as well as the chosen new media of photography and video, the works of presented women artists constitute a single rounded segment in the context of contemporary art in Dubrovnik.
But the exhibition offers no closure for, rather leaves open, the matter of the possibility of talking about some gender-defined, feminist poetics in the attitude to the landscape, and its transposition into the world of contemporary art. 


Ana Opalić was born in Dubrovnik in 1972. She took her degree in Film and TV Camera at the Academy of Dramatic Art in Zagreb in 1997. She deals with classic black and white as well as digital photography. She lives and works in Dubrovnik and Zagreb.

Ivana Pegan Baće was born in Dubrovnik in 1971. She graduated in sculpture at the Academy of Fine Arts in Zagreb in 1996. She deals with sculptures, photography and video-art. She has produced a great number of public sculptures (Lithuania, Germany, Czech Republic, USA). She lives and works in Dubrovnik.

Ana Požar Piplica was born in Knin in 1968. Sha graduated in painting at the Academy of Fine Arts in Zagreb in 1997. She deals with fashion performaces, installations, video-art and photography. She lives and works in Dubrovnik. 

Ivona Vlašić was born in 1968 in Dubrovnik. From 1992-1994 she attended 
Meister klasse fur Mahlerei in Graz run by prof. Gerhard Lojen.
She deals with painting and video-art. She lives and works in Dubrovnik.

paintings, photographs

Curated by Antun Maračić
From November 17 until December 16, 2007


A painter by vocation and education (he graduated from the Zagreb Academy of Fine Arts in 2003, class of Igor Rončević), Ivan Skvrce deals, one might well say, with neo-analytical work, i.e., with painting of an introspective nature, as the very title of the exhibition of course suggests. He is into painting that actively enquires into its own being. However, unlike the analytic or primary painting of the 1970s, which was void of any form of representation, restricting its consideration to its own bare physical and processual properties (support, brush stroke, application, film…), Skvrce’s work includes representation on the basis of photography, which he considers to be the “most resilient support for contemporary media culture”. He will use, for examples, motifs from crime and disaster as reported in the local press in Dubrovnik, which he transposes into stylised handmade scenes, works with a pronouncedly painterly materiality and an immanent questioning of the social significance of his own act. Then Skvrce tends to recycle his own work, painting different versions of his own paintings, during which time the initial motif will become increasingly insignificant. He will paint the same pictures on various supports (such as canvas and Perspex), simply copying them or making monochromes out of them (with a film of Dubrovnik green), then interpreting them in perspective, according to a photograph of some gallery set-up, as objects in space. Thus he takes up and investigates aspects of his own work, the process of working in art and in society, his affiliations, his professional and human origins.
This is a body of work with a highly pronounced ethical commitment, in conjunction with somewhat resigned conclusions. As well as a marked interest in self-knowledge, Skvrce’s works are an expression of active scepticism. Dissecting and denying his own work (he actually signs some of these works as one of the members of a three-member group, including two fellow artists), Skvrce produces artefacts that renew the problem of art’s fascination with its own mission; the elegance and incontrovertible decorative values of his productions include a modicum of ludic cynicism.
In any event, what we see here are works of an uncommon spiritual vitality, a vibrant multi-layeredness, in which, in spite of all the issues, the relativising, the doubts, the avoidance of any definition of style and point, we become aware of a high degree of creative temperature, and idealism too. Thus, in this work, the unusual maturity does not attempt to deny the youth of the author. However much this introspective and intellectual aspect might surprise us if we bear in mind Skvrce’s age, to the same extent, on the other hand, the impulsiveness and well nigh naive activism bring in a welcome counterpoint of freshness that confirms this youthfulness in the best sense of that word.

Ivan Skvrce was born in Dubrovnik in 1980. In 2003, he graduated from the Academy of Fine Arts in Zagreb, class of Igor Rončević. He had a residence period in the USA at Indiana University of Pennsylvania, Art Department. He has been exhibiting since 2004, and has to date had ten one-man shows and taken part in several collective exhibitions at home and abroad. 
Ivan Skvrce lives and works in Zagreb and in Dubrovnik. 

GABRO RAJČEVIĆ (1912-1943)
Paintings and drawings from the Museum of Modern Art Dubrovnik and private collections

Museum of Arts and Crafts, Zagreb, 09. 10.-09. 11. 2007

exhibition devised by : Lucija Aleksić, Antun Maračić
exhibition layout: Miroslav Gašparović, Antun Maračić

- - - -

The Museum of Arts and Crafts in Zagreb showed 42 paintings and 47 drawings by Gabro Rajčević, prematurely deceased Dubrovnik painter Gabro Rajčević. 
Gabro Rajčević was born on June 5, 1912, in Dobrota, Boka Kotorska. Because his father was often posted to new places in his career as a postal clerk, the boy Gabro often changed his settings (Dubrovnik, Trieste, Banja Luka and Kotor) and as a thirteen-year-old boy, in 1925, settled down for good with his family in Dubrovnik.
He recognized his vocation for painting very early on, and three years later came into contact with Kosta Strajnić, art historian, critic and conservator, informal animator and mentor, who gathered talented young people around him. As well as getting to know the art books that Strajnić had, he also met peers with the same propensities, including Ivan Ettore and Božidar Rašica with whom-in an informal trio of painters that their joint friend, the journalist and poet Gino Storelli called the "tri pitura" (three painters)-he worked and associated a great deal.
He also kept company with artists who had already made their names, guests in Dubrovnik, like Dobrović, Konjović, Šimunović and so on. Like Strajnić, they saw in Gabro a talented young man, which, in spite of his being under age, resulted in his enrolling (with the help of the rector of the institution, famed Ivan Meštrović) in the Academy of Fine Arts in Zagreb in 1930. He studied in the class of Vladimir Becić, who, like the other teachers, had a great respect for his work. But Rajčević could not put up with the discipline of the school, came into conflicts with faculty, and did not manage to complete the course, returning to Dubrovnik after three years.
In his short life, he dedicated himself completely to painting, achieving a considerable ouvre, consisting of drawings, watercolours, pastels and oils. He exhibited from 1937 on and had a certain amount of success, but was disappointed with the narrow-minded milieu. Not inclined to make compromises, he lived in poverty, and soon fell ill of the then fatal tuberculosis. He spent 1940 being treated in Samobor, Zagreb and Novi Marof. In spite of his serious illness, he worked vigorously almost to the day he died.
He died on October 14, 1943, aged 31.

From Mladen Tudor Collection

Henri Cartier-Bresson, René Burri, Robert Capa, Elliot Erwitt, Philippe Halsman, Danny Lyon, Inge Morath, Gilles Peress, Marc Riboud

Curated by Antun Maračić
From October 13 until November 25, 2007


This exhibition puts on view 138 black and white photographs of nine of the world’s great exponents of the medium, a small part of the photographic material that during the later 1950s-1960s, via the Magnum Agency, arrived from abroad for consideration by the Vjesnik review editions, primarily the weekly Globus. After they were used for the press, the Vjesnik press agency would archive some of the photographs, on the whole those of well known and mainly political personalities and events, but most of the pictures simply ended up in the trash. At the beginning of the 1970s Mladen Tudor, himself a renowned photographer, then employed in the Vjesnik company, saved some of the material from the pile of stuff meant to be written off that had collected in some nook of the editorial offices, and shaped from it this outstanding collection of international photographers, perhaps the most important one of its kind in the country.
All of the photographers for a shorter or longer time had their work distributed via the Magnum agency, together with the greats Bresson and Capa who in 1947 (with David Seymour and George Rodger) were its founders. Magnum postulated and cultivated a creative approach to the subject, to human presence and emphasised empathy on the part of the cameraman, as well as the ability to react at the crucial moment, that in which the essence of the event or phenomenon recorded somehow inhered. In brief, the photographer was expected to perform his task of documenting all the aspects of this world of ours through an emphatically personal view, i.e., that he or she should combine the business of news photographer with that of artist. There were other demands made on the reporter, particularly the willingness to put his life on the line on dangerous assignments. Two of the founders of Magnum, Robert Capa and David “Chim” Seymour were killed camera in hand. The first was killed by a land mine in Indochina in 1954, the second by a machine-gun burst while photographing the Suez war two years later. The Tudor Collection consists of subject units, with some degree of completeness, of the individual lensmen. The range of themes is as broad as human life, and the life of human communities in extremely diverse manifestations – from the distressing scenes of war and life in prison, via the life of the big city, life in a hippy commune, the life of dogs and their coexistence with people, to moments of letting it all hang out in great binges and parties.
The following themes then can be seen: Texas Prisons (Conversations with the Dead) of Danny Lyon; Son of a Bitch, Elliott Erwitt; Londonderry and Belfast, Gilles Peress; New York, Lama Foundation and Oktoberfest Munich of Cartier-Bresson.
A special unit consists of 20 or so works by several photographers all on the one theme – Picasso.
It is in this section of the collection and exhibition that both the individuality of approach and the artistic inclinations of the authors can be seen. In fact, six photographers of the nine shown here managed to photograph the celebrated painter (Capa, Bresson, Burri, Riboud, Halsman, Inge Morath, each one of the contributions bringing out some other aspect of Picasso’s personality. While some lay stress on his creative power, his superhuman abilities, fixing on the black roundedness, the gleam and penetration of his unique eyes (Burri), others snap him in moments of family life (Capa), while Cartier-Bresson completely humanises him, taking him in the most ordinary situations of life, receiving the post, or bare to the waist posing in his bedroom while getting dressed.
These smallish photographs (of 16 x 23.5 to 20.4 to 25.4 cm), excellent prints that contain details of the cameraman on the back, as well, often, as instructions about how to use them (for example, there is always the request in the case of Bresson’s pictures that they should be published without any reduction of the composition, with the black border retained), apart from being invaluable material in themselves, are also a document about the concern for the profession, the integrity of the creative vision. We can see the continuation of this attention and conduct in the fact of the existence of the collection, which is nothing but the consequence of a fellow-artist’s impulse to save valuable material from destruction, without any material interest. On this occasion, we take particular pleasure in stating, the Mladen Tudor Collection is being shown in its entirety. By sheer chance, Tudor at this show is once again meeting his fellows from abroad. His works are currently in the set-up of the museum’s holdings, and, by a trick of space, carry on organically from this exhibition.Thus it is possible on the spot to check out the accomplishment inherent in his photographic oeuvre, created at the same time as the photographs of the collection.


Curated by Antun Maračić
25. August - 20. September 2007


Painter, sculptor, poet, set designer and director, carnival organiser, unofficial but nevertheless effective cultural mover who involves the citizens of his native Bol, young and old, in his theatrical programmes and art associations, Ivica Jakšić Čokrić, Puko, is a rare example of the free spirit, critic, satirist and great philanthropist.
Exuberantly self-taught, the intensity of his imagination rivalled by that of his energy, he is constantly in touch with his own and the collective reality, to which he reacts immediately and impassionedly. Spiritually on the death watch then, Puko is actively with incessant fusillades of verbal and material puns, generous with his comments on both wartime and peacetime social distortions and anomalies.
While in the 1990s he created his sardonic sculptural grotesques on the topic of war, building artefacts of all kinds of objects, and fragments of them, that he happened to come upon, today, Puko in a similar and even more concentrated manner, with the same brilliant lucidity is poking fun at the ecological threat in the vast floating factories of mass leisure and tightly restricted nomadism called cruisers.
These are caricatures of the vast monsters that circulate around the Mediterranean and the Adriatic, ships that, with their spectral wails and the rattling chains of their anchors, blot out the landscape and overshadow the cities; from which human herds gush out, thousands and thousands of carefully programmed and guided tourists that day by day flood and overwhelm tourist spots that are no match for them.
Particularly, of course, Dubrovnik, and this presentation is particularly connected with the daily woes of the city. What is more, the concrete exhibition venue practically allows an encounter with the real ships and their miniaturised parodies. From the atrium of the Museum, in which the exhibits are quartered, and the sea with the anchored originals of these hulks, the border is just the line of the road. In the very title of the exhibition Jakšić’s intervention-cum-creation starts. Putting no for negation in the centre of cruiser he promptly puts forward his own viewpoint, creates a brusque pun, heralding at the same time his own critical playfulness, which, however, he fully puts into practice in the sculptural form of the object. These models are curious Archimboldian assemblages that instead of a literal model-style mimesis and faithfulness to the prototype, as would at first seen, reveal to the more careful eye the grotesqueries of their components, the differing technological paraphernalia, the parts of plumbing and wiring, the kitchen equipment, the toys… A mass of pipes, taps, mixers, film cassettes, screws, nails put vehemently together function, instead of by imitation, rather in the manner of association that ultimately undoubtedly gives the illusion of and motions us towards the required motif. By a perceptual analysis of the components we can then detect the comedy of the assemblage, the act of ridicule of a serious social problem as embodied in the phenomenon of these floating tourist colossi. From this point of view (alluding, that is, to the gravity of the threat) Puko puts in the cargo of the ship a whole “Nato armament load”, toy tanks, aircraft, artillery. All this together is the manner in which Jakšić Čokrić Puko manages to cope with the deviations of his surrounds and the contemporary world - with irony, mockery, the same means, that is, that, along with wit, skill and patience, are available to him qua artist. He thus puts in his little voice of mocking protest, which is in fact nothing but the essential, however slowly-working, voice of reason.
At the same time, these great toys with their ridiculousness, seem at least temporarily to be damping down the gravity of the significance of their inspirations. The monsters have been at least temporarily tamed and reduced to a human scale, and people are once again bigger than they are. However much this might be just an illusion, at the base of things, it has to be the truth. We have no alternative but to believe in this. Puko’s artefact becomes a moral gage, which is its greatest value. 

(March-July 2007)
foto and video documentation

21. June - September 2007


UGD radovi UGD radovi UGD radovi UGD radovi
UGD radovi UGD radovi UGD radovi UGD radovi
UGD radovi UGD radovi UGD radovi UGD radovi

From the end of March through to July this year, major and disruptive building works took place in the Museum of Modern Art Dubrovnik. The major part of the works consisted of the installation of heating and air-conditioning systems throughout the building.
Since the system required the power supply to be upgraded, it was necessary to bring in new supply lines from the substation in Petar Krešimir Street (and this itself still needs to be boosted for the purpose), involving large-scale excavations for the location of the transmission cables, along Sunčana Street all the way to the garden of the Museum, where several external units were deployed for the generation of heat and fresh air. In addition, the walls of the building had to support not only the installations for this purpose, but also be made ready for conduits serving the video monitoring and anti-burglary system, involving hundreds of metres of cabling. After all these conduits and wires were installed into the walls, the damage had to be repaired by the plasterers, and then of course all the wall surfaces needed painting. We also repaired, polished and varnished the woodblock flooring.
We also went in for upgrading to meet the demanding museological conditions that enable the most sensitive exhibitions to be hosted, increased the Museum's security, including that of its most valuable acquisitions, and, or course, made living and working in the building better and more comfortable. These works in the Museum gave rise to the works that are now shown in the galleries.
These, then, are documentary works that record the several-months-long process of demolition and chaos in the building, and the whole route through to renovation. Now, when the walls are white again, the flooring has been sanded and cleaned, when the shiny, smooth new stone has been laid down on the floor of the atrium... the interregnum between before and after is visible only in the photos and videos we took. 
Here we can see not just the condition of the building, but also the fates of us staff members during the almost unbearable situations at the building site. Armoured in dusty plastic sheeting, we had to work and receive our visitors in these emergency conditions, migrating together with the equipment from office to office, into the corridors, and then, with the whole of the inventory, into the exhibition rooms, wherever it was possible to work.
Also visible are the activities in the more secure zones of the stores where, being deprived of the ability to mount exhibitions, we took the opportunity to provide proper recordings and contemporary documentation of our holdings.
In short, in these materials, we are endeavouring to conjure up the life and appearance of the house and of ourselves, its residents and workers, as well as the work of the tradesmen of all kinds, in a period of over three months. We would also like via these records to provide some kind of insight into these extensive, visually striking and sometimes dramatic operations that, leaving behind them not a trace of their existence, preceded the current whiteness, purity and airiness of the house.

Croatian art since the end of 19th until 21st century


21. June - November 2007



The exhibition From the Holdings of the Museum-Croatian art from the end of the nineteenth to the beginning of the twenty-first century is a presentation of a rich collection of the Museum of Modern Art Dubrovnik, that offers a chronological overview through Croatian modern and contemporary Art. 
The Museum of Modern Art Dubrovnik has, in its sixty-year history, managed to collect important holdings of more than two thousand and three hundred paintings, sculptures, prints, drawings, photographs, installations and video-works and it is distinguished as one amongst the few most important collections of modern and contemporary art in Croatia.
The exhibition from the Holdings of the Museum of Modern Art Dubrovnik is conceived as a chronological overview of Croatian art from the end of nineteenth to the beginning of the twenty-first century. In line with the character of the collection, it primarily presents the works of modern painters of Dubrovnik area, whose value has gone beyond merely local significance. Along with a great number of works by Vlaho Bukovac, the founder of Croatian modern painting, the visitor is confronted with works by painters such as Mato Celestin Medović, Marko Rašica, Niko Miljan, Ignjat Job, Gabro Rajčević, Ivan Ettore, Ivo Dulčić, Antun Masle, Đuro Pulitika, and the others. Furthermore, the exhibition presents classics of Croatian modern art such as Miroslav Kraljević, Oskar Herman, Vladimir Becić, Vilko Gecan, Milivoj Uzelac, Emanuel Vidović, Marino Tartaglia, while contemporary visual expression is represented with works by Julije Knifer, Ivan Kožarić, Mladen Tudor, Igor Rončević, Željko Jerman, Slaven Tolj and other authors.
The selection of works at the exhibition naturally represents just one amongst the numerous possibilities that the collection offers and the presentation of the works provides an opportunity for meeting or re-discovering their visual qualities.

Contemporary Photography from London

Curated by Stephen McLaren and Sophie Howarth
British Council and Museum of Modern Art Dubrovnik

Artists: Gary Alexander, Adrian Fisk, David Gibson, Nils Jorgensen, Stephen McLaren, Johanna Neurath, Matt Stuart, Nick Turpin

From February 7 until February 21, 2007


Showcases the work of an emergent generation of British photographers, notable for their fresh, candid depictions of public life in London.
In recent years London has discovered its own photographic allure. New generation of London-based practitioners is returning to the idea of the ‘decisive moment’. Keenly aware of the history of street photography, the photographers in Onto The Streets insist on the continued relevance of still photography to capture the unique flux of people, matter and imagery that combine at street level.
Their observations of the dynamics of street life hold up a mirror to the kind of society we are making for ourselves, and establish London as a centre for contemporary street photography.
As Nick Turpin explains: 'If we have become workers and shoppers, our lives about earning and spending; if our families are separated and our neighbours are strangers; if our media are focused on celebrity, sex and sport, where can we look to be shown the state we are in? It is in images made right on the streets that we are best able see the mixed blessings of life in a democratic, free market economy.'