FIELD – MATRIX, Rijeka, Museum of Modern and Contemporary Art, Rovinj, Rovinj heritage museum, gallery St. Toma, Koprivnica (Koprivnica Municipal Museum, Gallery Koprivnica)
In his new exhibition called Field – Matrix, Predrag Todorovic has revealed a remarkable ability to organize a large all over surface of the painted field and to achieve a high degree of visual activation, using the whirl of impulsive gestures, with brisk and swift strokes. In his monumentally simple drawings, filled with conceptual potential and strong visual intensity, there exist only two constituent elements -the ground- and numerous vital, refined, densely woven, concentrated, sensitive, vibrant cluster moves. The strokes are accomplished in the uniform rhythm that extends from the edge to the edge of the cadre in the spatial stretching, marbling, and with fine, grainy, pulsating and tactile emphasized surface - in choices where there is no obstacle as preconceptions. The powerful energetic matrix creates the illusion of motion in whirlpools, in structures seemingly scattered, but actually held together, covering the entire surface of the substrate.
These drawings are primordial mass ("porridge"), "primordial soup" in which each line looks like a flash of intent or will; physical, formative, mental and emotional appearance may probably occur from this substance...In such undefined area, the state of anticipation and expectation is in common to all of them.
The cadre space is not a reality, but the expression of potentials, the iconography of the visual story that is staged before the event itself (it does not matter what the story is about, but the activity certainly exists!), a suggestion of something like phantasm that was drawn from the substance – which has just appeared from the initial uncertainty (black), gradually articulated in the "white noise" and is yet to be realized.
In this way, the drawings are visual register of the primal processes. As the author says, a "random signal" began to articulate from the background noise into the movement with direction, as if some intention appeared. However, something is just set in motion – it swirls, spouts, moves and forms –and it will formulate and appear by itself in self-initiation in something formative or recognizable.
The field, the Matrix, "Divine Matrix" is a metaphor of the image which appears to the author in his ecstatic work process as a true reality – the one in which all the apparent, sacred, sublime and metaphorical is embodied. In pseudo-science and science it is a holographic information field, clean energy, energy field of the Point Zero, Point Zero... In the religious discourse it is the Light, Creation, manifestation of the Creator and in the esoteric is akasha, the ether, the basic substance in which everything is written that was before, what is now and what will be.
Drawings are made with a sharp object on the stainless steel, galvanized sheets or on pure zinc and aluminum sheets. Each material substrate reacts differently to the author's action and challenges him in different ways; the purpose of modifying the surface is a curious author's research of the ground reaction in his efforts to plunge into meditative and sublime area behind and below the image. Zinc, for example, is soft, flabby and pliable and it does not corrode so this enable him to achieve the astonishing reflex, which reflects even the color. The author is hardly able to locate the focus, not even assume the ultimate outcome of his efforts. The situation on the galvanized base enters the space deeper and more dynamically, thanks to its glow and reflections.
The relation to density, coverage and structure of the ground is subordinated to the feeling of the substance from which everything is made of. Due to the rapid perspective disappearances or escapes in white or dark areas, the drawing spaces become immeasurable.
Mono-elements of these drawings - lines, circular sequences – burst out and revitalize in the inexhaustible inspiring procédé of continuous energy circulation. It is all about the elimination of any spatial and temporal boundaries. In non-focal, infinite spaces with neither beginning nor ending, flow the boundless undulating rhythms of circles– a symbol of eternal and infinite– which are materialized in always different artificial configurations which exclude any idea of illusion.
These dense textures with fine and tactile surfaces are the result of the series of curved, long and flexible lines carved without any plan calculated in advance; miniature weaving of wavy, whirling and spiral strings freely scattered and dispersed by physically bounded, but potentially undefined surface area that turns it into a dynamic field of tense energy charge, which is always in movement and transition and with the author's enthusiasm recognizable with the commas into the surface.
Although the impression of uninhibited outbursts of enigmatic kinetics of lines is gained, Todorović’s subconscious sense of order and measure is observed as well as the strength of balance and discipline of the line relations and his ability to maintain the consistence and strength of his drawings’ substrate.
The author makes all decisions in the moment when the line is created. In that way, the work creates from itself. The whirling linear structure moves in directions that are largely dictated by the surface. The motion of the line is completely intuitive, in constant transformation, like the pure automatic reflexes of the subconscious, worn by intentional suggestion of the substrate with the inner urge that drives the author's hand in the magical process of drawing.
The whole cadre–with the exciting adventure of spontaneity and immediacy –rises up gradually with every move withdrawn with awareness of the whole. Partial relation to any place, detail and fragment here does not exist not even for a moment. Configurations of the lines boil with the resoluteness; lines act as primordial and constant, solemnly lasting, but also random and momentary.
The drawer’s game with the depth of space frame is impressive. Within the dense layers of the scratched surface made by the sharp instrument, one can see the volume that evokes vague, quite a shallow space. The space is adopted by the curved and spiral lines that sometimes create the illusion of three-dimensional space and even has something of the sculptural solidity.
These drawings are highly subjective and with a certain psychological subtext - meta-world, the space of personal metaphors – cryptograms with inherent developmental logic; they are direct expression of the author's psychological relief, the place of registration of his current and transitory moods. Numerous sensory information from his unconscious pulsations are sublimated into a peculiar aesthetic structure that transfers a large impersonal truth about everything is being re-created and formed in any time (to one who does not require anything formative and narrative in them).
Therefore, drawings are read as intuitive-meditative practices that create a diary of sensations witch have occurred to the author in his creative process, as well as a relief of his psyche, the diary of the sequences of thoughts, attitudes and moods of joy, melancholy, anxiety...We experience and read them as archetypal symbols, magical and mythical characters, but also hermetic, or even esoteric and illegible pictograms from the author's individual mythology; morphological transcription of some of his internal states and turbulences, enigmatic contents that have no historical, metaphorical, symbolic or literal value.
However, the spatial organization of drawing assumes the direct involvement of observer and the perception of drawing "lives" of his perceptive effort. Only the observer’s active and direct complicity achieves and modifies the image of the space, because every human action is a new experience of the space, but it is also a testing of capacities and responsibilities of our own actions. The observer is not capable to absorb the artwork in the whole: he is not able to perceive it or to present it, he can only speculate through its occurring manifestations, fragments and flashes. As the observer changes places walking around the drawing, the artwork image also changes in inexhaustible variations, leading him at the same time to test his own everyday notions of the space continuity. Thanks to the expressiveness and complexity of the drawings, each observer is able to create his own associations materialized in narration.
Todorovic’s drawings are not works of negation, nihilism, dark, dark side of the world - they are, indeed, pathetically speaking, the creation of vitality, passionate growth, positive energy, heroism of human or cosmic drama.
This cycle is a proof of remarkable creative range of this unpretentious self-effacing artist re-affirming him as a thorough expert of drawing skills who is in constant look for new challenges responding with new expressive possibilities. His artwork is unique in style and motifs confirming themselves in originality, forcefully attraction, refined sensuality and imposing splendor, unique métier-poetic postulates, glorifying and emphasizing the priority of the artist's subjective invention and his individual formal imagination.
text: Ivica Župan
translation: Ivana Gabrić