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Transition and transition : Josip Vaništa, Oleg Kulik, Blue Noses
exhibition catalogue
2012

Three selected artistic experiences are merged, that of Oleg Kulik, Josip Vaništa and the Blue Noses Group, by their common ground: the attitude towards dramatic events in the social domain. They explore the time, symbolically marked by the fall of the Berlin wall and what is it that exactly started with post socialism, a time whose very beginning is deeply paradoxically as it is defined by an ending. The present is anxiously lingering between an ending of one era, that it wants to have no connection with, and dreaming about a prolific future that it over and over again fails to reach. 

Josip Vaništa, a Croatian doyen of the Avant-Garde, is in his stylistic expression quite different form Kulik, he is contemplative and reserved, calm and cold, but shares with the Russian the common denominator or analyzing the process of societies passing from a communist to a liberal capitalist system. This exhibition presents his collages, which are stylistically keen to reduction, scarcity and minimalism, and that in a diary kind of way follow the horrors of the everyday transitional society. 

Oleg Kulik, a Russian of Ukrainian ethnicity, is a world renowned artist best known for his radical performances and actions. Works from the so called animalistic cycle, where he inhibits an animal persona, became an emblem of his art in the 1990s. This radical actionism, as well as his works in the medium of photography and video, are a reaction to a brutal reality of a post socialist society, of this highly paradoxical time in history. He is considered to be one of the leading, if not the leading exponent of a cruelly naturalistic and provocative artistic expression. 

The Russian group Blue Noses (Alexander Shaburov and Vyeceslav Mizin) is according to some one of the most remarkable phenomena in the art world of the 21st century. Their work is based on the tradition of the Russian absurd, but at the same time is highly saturated with humour, self-irony and cynicism. Through the medium of photography and video installations they deal with the everyday clichés in a populist, small and unpretentious way. Their artistic way of expression desires to be understandable to all.