mixed media on canvas
250 x 179.5 cm
By creating a personal artistic environment based on the spiritual and intellectual querying of the world within and around him, in his Untitled abstract painting from 1989, Goran Fruk seems to evoke the penetration of light in the darkness. Questioning art and its possibilities, the artist uses extreme tones, the brightest white and the darkest black, to encourage the observers to examine their own minds and interpret the work independently.
Goran Fruk (1959-1993, Zagreb) was a multimedia artist, painter, poet and a passionate mountaineer, who entered the Academy of Fine Arts in Zagreb in 1982, after having completed his studies in comparative literature and art history at the Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences. At the Academy, he was quickly recognised as an extremely gifted painter and a striking phenomenon in Croatian visual arts in the 1980s. His creative oeuvre spans the period from 1986 to his sudden death in 1993. During his student days, he collaborated with colleagues from the Academy on staging various actions, music projects, happenings and performances that left a significant mark on the art scene of that period. Among them, the three performances titled Defenestration I, II, III, staged from 1986 to 1988, are considered Fruk’s most significant actions. As part of that project, together with his colleagues from the Academy, he organised a happening in three acts whereby they “ejected” paintings and civilisational waste through the window of his family home and his studio onto public ground below. Fruk’s maturation as a painter led him to push the boundaries of the treatment of the painting surface and to abolish the frame of the painting itself. In a very short creative period, he achieved an intriguing body of work and left an indelible mark on the Croatian art scene with his artistic activity.
Text: Lorena Šimić, trainee curator of the National Museum of Modern Art © National Museum of Modern Art, Zagreb
Translated by: Robertina Tomić
Photo: Goran Vranić © National Museum of Modern Art, Zagreb