The exhibition Kogoj – Fabijanić, The Quest for Aesthetic Utopia, is proof of the traditional cultural bonds between Slovenia and Croatia, as well as a guarantee of even stronger and richer bonds in the future. The artists have fostered a creative dialogue for a number of years, but this is the first time that they are appearing together in an exhibition. Despite differences, which are unavoidable in view of their fields of creativity and their temperaments, there are common points and similarities between them.
Kogoj enriches objects mostly intended for everyday use, provoking a sense of wonder by producing artefacts whose uniqueness gives them museum value. Still, these objects are iconically offered for everyday use, the aim of their beauty being to elevate the living space and bestow a deeper meaning upon it. Kogoj’s “natural design” indicates the surprising likeness of natural and man-made creation; in other words, the fatal connection between man and nature.
Fabijanić designs urban objects: squares, promenades, streets, in which the old and the new are thoughtfully united. The new does not consist merely of the elements of order and structure, but also of fittings such as benches, lamps, fountains as well as plastic touches. They all bear the characteristics of art objects, create a new aesthetic identity of the milieu, or give it a higher level of urbanity.
Both artists explore the use of organic forms, softness and smoothness, roundedness and curves, as well as different textures and structures in objects traditionally manufactured by hand or industrially. Both are fond of natural materials: wood and stone, glass and precious metals; both are experts in technology, function and ergonomics. Both like experimenting, inciting wonder and playing, evoking connections and allusions, thus changing the banal into the unique and special. Their objects, besides being used, bring joy, elevation and inspiration. By inciting aesthetic sensations, they also convey an ethical message: optimism and belief in the human capability to turn everyday reality into a paradise created by man.
Exhibition project organisers
Government Communication Office of the Republic of Slovenia
Ministry of Culture of the Republic of Croatia
Croatian Academy of Sciences and Arts – The Glyptotheque
Embassy of the Republic of Croatia in Ljubljana
Authors of the exhibition
Oskar Kogoj and Nenad Fabijanić
Nikolina Jelavić Mitrović, Zvonimir Pavković
Coordination of the exhibition
Alenka Ivančič, Marja Lorenčak Kiker
Design of printed matter
Luciano Bonacini, Renato Celio, Damir Fabijanić, Jana Fabijanić, Jelena De Belder-Kovačič, Foto Gabriotti, Primož Korošec, Miro Martinić, Robert Ograjenšek, Zvonimir Pavković, Davor Pavlović, Janez Pukšič, Vrbica & Tošović
Technical execution of the exhibition
National Gallery of Slovenia, FED, Sliško, Stolarija Koren
The exhibition was made possible with the help of
Jadrankamen d.d., Pučišća, Brač; Kamen d.d., Pazin; Generali Slovenija; Klesarstvo Jerbić, Sv. Nedjelja; O.K. Stipe, Pučišća, Brač; Poslovni sistem Mercator d.d.; Vinarstvo Lisjak, Dutovlje
28 September–24 October 2010
National Gallery of Slovenia