Vojin Bakić, Torso III, 1956

Vojin Bakić
Torso III, 1956

Vojin Bakić is one of the greatest Croatian sculptors of the second half of the 20th century. He graduated from the Academy of Fine Arts in Zagreb in 1939, and attended a special course taught by sculptors I. Meštrović and F. Kršinić until 1945. He spent time on study stays in Milan, Florence and Paris. He collaborated with the EXAT 51 art group and the New Tendencies movement, and is an avant-garde artist who was amongst those who introduced abstraction into Croatian art.
Between 1938 and 1945, he modelled sensuous female nudes of closed and softly shaped volumes. In the period between 1945 and 1948, he treated surfaces impressionistically with an expressive interplay between light and shadow. The volume of his female nudes and bull statues created between 1949 and 1958 is compressed, with the details merged into the totality of the sculptures creating a miraculous balance of large, pure forms of abstract beauty. In 1958, he started experimenting with open forms, interior spaces and light reflections on glossy surfaces. His monumental memorials are based on innovative and modern sculptural concepts, i.e., abstract, elementary and geometrised forms, and became universal signs of the way the anti-fascist fight in World War II is remembered in collective consciousness.
Bakić’s series of nudes and torsos unify his unearthing of organic and associative forms. The pure, refined and polished white marble of his Torso III represents a youthful female torso of an abstract form of universal beauty.

Text: Tatijana Gareljić, museum consultant of the National Museum of Modern Art © National Museum of Modern Art, Zagreb
Translated by: Ana Janković
Photo: Goran Vranić © National Museum of Modern Art, Zagreb

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