Josip Zeman
(1927 – 2001)
Dreaming of the Moon, 1955
series "Wood Play " (1955-1963)
30 x 24.5 x 20 cm

Josip Zeman graduated from the School of Applied Arts in Zagreb in 1955. His style ranges from organic to geometric expression, from more freely treated to polished surfaces. From the beginning he gravitated towards abstraction, and the avant-garde (Rotating Act, 1954). By using sound and movement in the sculpture A Rocket Bird Flies Around the World (1962) he created one of the first mobiles in Croatia. Sculptures from the series Wood Play (1955 – 63) have refined shapes, vertical and horizontal rhythms in space, while in the series Black Visions (1964 – 92) he designed folding objects from machined wood parts.
He was one of the first sculptors in Croatia to apply non-figurative forms in the medium of wood. In one of his early works Dreaming of the Moon (1955) from the series Wood Play (1955 – 63) he designed a sculpture of primary forms and dynamic surface configuration, creating a concise work of integrated nature and human associative imagination.
Text: Tatijana Gareljić, Museum advisor of the National Museum of Modern Art © National Museum of Modern Art, Zagreb, 2022
Translated by: Robertina Tomić
Photo: Goran Vranić © National Museum of Modern Art, Zagreb, 2022

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