The Charles Street Gallery invites you to the opening of “A Serbian Celebration of Art,” featuring the works of Zoran Srbljin and Zoran Kuzmanov. The artists will not be in attendance, but their friends, countrymen and collectors will be! The reception is from 5:30 to 9 pm on Friday, April 21st, at 914 Charles Street, Beaufort. 843-521-9054.
The Artists, In Their Own Words…
I was born in Kikinda, Serbia in 1958. I am a physician, specialist in physical therapy, rehabilitation and acupuncture. I am practicing medicine at the City Hospital of Kikinda, Serbia and I am also a painter. I fell in love with art and I started painting in my early teens and I never stopped. I was fortunate to be trained by great masters of watercolor, which I adopted as my technique. I perfected my artistic sensibilities by studying works of great artists in major galleries of Europe. I had seven solo exhibitions and number of group exhibitions.
My roots are in a small and very special village of Mokrin a few miles north of Kikinda. I like to spend my time there and I consider it to be my spiritual home. Very often the sights and vistas of this village and surrounding areas are subjects of my paintings. Once in very distant past this entire area was covered by the waters of the Panonian Sea. The sea has gone long time ago and has left huge flat empty space that resonates with energy. I have a strong connection with that space and with the energy of water.
My themes are space, soil, water and light. When I paint houses or when an object or a human figure enters my paintings it is only to highlight this living space and its qualities. How do I paint space? By arranging objects, light and points of view so they suggest existence and qualities of the living space. Space for me is not just absence of objects but a living and vibrant entity in its own right graced by beauty, serenity and awe-inspiring silence.
I was born in 1960, in Kikinda, a small town in the flatlands of North Serbia, where the winters are cold and the summers are dusty.
When I was a kid, my parents enrolled me in a drawing course. I remember tearing one piece of paper after another by drawing and erasing repeatedly what I thought was my attempt at drawing a chair. The teacher looked at the used up paper I held and told me I will one day become a painter.
I wished so hard that his words become true, but my professional life path took me in a different direction. I went to law school, chasing that good old security of 9-17 life, but I never stopped drawing and painting. I finished elementary school and gymnasium in Kikinda and I graduated law from University of Belgrade.
Over time, I allowed myself to flirt with various ways of expression, from sculpture to painting hyper-realism, impressionism to abstract and aquarelle.
My painting aspirations are diverse, both when it comes to the technique and the subject. However, in most cases and with most passion, I find myself making portraits. Whether it’s a single person or a group portrait, I don’t mind, as long as I can explore the inner lives of the portrayed and convey them to the viewer with a feeling of serenity and relaxation. My motivation to amuse the viewer with these portraits is the same as the one of a witty eloquent that wishes to make people laugh – only with me, it manifests in a form of a visual art. Truth be told, the portraits may end up with a certain caricature quality to them. The humorous elements that are present are mostly tied to a feeling of family warmth, sometimes to a subtle irony of human character and seldom to a sarcastic commentary of a certain society ache. And if you ask me about the noses I would answer you with a quote – they are the crack in everything through which the light comes in.