Thursday March 21st, 2019, at 6.00 pm, the exhibition 1 + 1 heterogeneous similitudes with the works of Elisabetta Bacci and Gregor Purgaj will open at Art Factory in Majšperk. The exhibition is curated by Dušan Fišer. Reasons, situations, themes, apparently different, unfold in a single exhibition project, almost in a sort of counterpoint, comparison and dialogue. And although the declination of the individual works leads to an apparent diversity, the conducting impulse for these two artists is the same: the reasoning on the dynamics of color, on its nuances and contrasts. One way this, to say that color, is the real nodal point of their thinking and the indirect way to dialogue at a distance. The color in all its chromatic explosions and fragmentations modulated on a ternary system in Bacci’s way and in the whole possibility of the muted and battered tone in Purgaj’s way.
For Elisabetta Bacci, the drafting of color manifests itself in the construction of the designed space, becoming architecture as a definition of the detail within the macrostructure and as a definition of symbolic places defined for simple and flat geometric shapes. Of course, it is a figuration, an image almost disappeared, put to rest under mounds of pigment and color variations, where it becomes difficult to perceive the object of the pictorial plots: a trapeze is the pier (in the case of the cycle Piers), a golden rectangle is the Tebah in the case of the same cycle: repetition as a game of perfection, the sequence as a compositional and installation scheme.
In Purgaj, on the other hand, the main subject of the story becomes the human figure seen in its infinite expressive possibilities. The theme of the face, a metaphor of every singularity or sign of every existence, becomes the mirror in which – paraphrasing Lautrémont – every image, every moment, past and future is reflected. The blink of the eyelashes – consciously brought to his diapason – makes the fantasy fly towards unstoppable goals. Characteristic aspect in these works is the immediacy of the message, the almost total lack of intellectual mediation: an absence that is to the benefit of the immediate perception of the work.
We talk with Gregor Purgaj about his work and this project.
You are usually living in Murska Sobota: are you fitting well in this little town?
I feel wery connected with the environment where I grew up. I still find new things that keep my mind going on, and I love the surrounding nature. Furthermore, you can always escape for a quick trip to the urban site. That’s why I don’t care if my work is fitting in to it, I just do it.
Your instinct pushes you to work with painting. What distinctive sign do you find in your work?
The brush always represented some kind of a spirit for me, as I can remember. I was always fascinated about paintings and the vision of the artist in the studio with the brush in his hand like a magician with his magic stick. That’s why I started drawing since I was a kid. The way I paint today is just a reflection of my experiences and influences from painting, illustrations, design, graffiti, video, music, movies… but I don’t label things. If I like something, I like it. If I love it, I love it and if I am hating it, I hate it. I do not follow trends, this is just who I am.
So, it is possible to define your painting as a kind of challenge to contemporaneity?
I guess so, but I don’t think about it.
How do you see the Slovenian art system?
The problem in Slovenia is, that we all are thinking Ljubljana is a big and modern place, and all the rest is sleeping beauty. I do not know if there is really an art system in Slovenia. You got gallerys and stuff, and of course we have a lot of potential, but we have the same problems like the rest of the world, I guess.
Can you talk about the project exhibition with Elisabetta Bacci that will be open in March at Art Factory in Majšperk?
I can tell, that I am looking forward to see Elisabetta again and to work on the set up for the exhibition with her, to have an exchange about our points of view and further possibilities. We don’t want two exhibitions in one room, but one exhibition of two different artists in the same room with a productive and healthy dialogue about our work.
Others plans for the future?
Just keep on creating stuff as long as I enjoy it. And I know there are infinite range of things to explore and get inspired from, so I hope the ride will be very long (laughing).
Elisabetta Bacci and Gregor Purgaj. 1+1 heterogeneous similitudes
curated by Dušan Fišer
March 21 – May 5 2019
+386 41 967427
Gregor Purgaj, Face, 2018, pittura su tela, cm 100 x 100, courtesy Galerija Murska Sobota
Elisabetta Bacci, 2019, allestimento della mostra Three Cycles al Centre for Contemporary Arts, Pivka, ph F.Fabris
Gregor Purgaj, One day at a time, 2018, pittura su tela, cm 80 x 60, courtesy Galerija Murska Sobota
He is editorial director of Juliet art magazine.