Art critique

Le Fantôme de la liberté, the solo exhibition 2022.

The unique multimedia project was presented at the Bosnian Cultural Center on 14th of December 2022. The exhibition was opened with an audio-visual projection and performance by the author, and an introductory speech by prof. dr. Danis Lan Fejzic. Fantôme de la liberté (Fantom of Freedom) is an exhibition of iluminated spatial installations with audio-visual projection. Following the conviction that the true nature of the human personality is freedom, the author invites the viewer with her own artistic expressions to dive into a dreamy, imaginary world where the spiritual and the sublime merge with the everyday. Immersive levitating figures, along with a constant flow of animated, pulsating patterns, creates a specific atmosphere in which the audience interacts directly with the work. There is a lot of dynamics and movement, and time seems to stand still; it is up to us to indulge in a somewhat different, infinitely mystical experience of space.

Prof. dr. Danis Lan Fejzic: Liberation as an ideal (“Dance of the Phantom of Freedom”)

„Art has always reflected both individual emotional states and critical social moments. A dictionary definition of art says that art is quality, production, expression and domain of action, then as a phenomenon/product created in accordance with aesthetic principles, something perceived as beautiful – appealing, but also as something that has greater significance than the ordinary, mundane. But it is also the need to satisfy one’s own taste, personal affinities and prestige. Aesthetic definitions and the establishment of aesthetic canons sometimes, throughout history, look like an overly confused wandering trying to fathom the “unfathomable and absolute”. In fact, there doesn’t seem to be, and can’t be, a universal conclusion or “law” that validates something that is so variable and individual.

In accordance with everything already said, the artistic play/ecstasy of Dzejlana Karaman Pasic takes on ethical, humanistic features that (by the author’s intention) transcend any formal aesthetics, any purely poetic level that is an end in itself. Dzejlana sees art (and its natural possibilities) as a “message conductor”, which, in her work, is also an invitation to confront ourselves. The author strongly wants (and often succeeds) to release the entire spectrum of suppressed and carefully guarded patterns of consciousness/subconsciousness in the furthermost parts of memory, with her installation statements – poetically called “Phantoms of Freedom”. These displayed, floating Angels in the eye of the discerning observer (in accordance with the successfully added musical-visual elements) exceed the function and symbolism that the “Phantom” setting “dictates” to us with already learned postulates and narrative.

Visually (appealing – frightening) is in constant and successful correlation with the message of the author’s philosophical and spiritual self. Her materialized attitude that functional and purposeful realization necessarily rests on Liberation truly provokes the observer to (at least for an instance) experience the dance with Phantoms/Angels… with realising that the fascination for mythical freedom often causes the loss of Self. The duality of Dzejlana’s metaphysical speech and the inherent message/invitation to the audience is certainly something that foreshadows her own (future) creative life and personality. It is undoubtedly a creative path worth following.”

“All things in nature are dark unless we expose them to light.” (Leonardo Da Vinci)

Reflections, the solo exhibition 2022.

The idea of the project “Reflections” is to offer the observer a unique artistic experience in space by using large-scale paintings and installations. Since the artworks are composed of various types of material, such as mirror pieces, they allow open communication between the art piece and the observer through reflection. With a plethora of such paintings, each of them able to reflect reality, we are awarded with visual experience engaging both reality and our imagination in the same matter. From my point of view, the presence of the outside world is reflected on two levels. At first, it pertains to certain referential relations through a hidden object, that is, an object transposed into an arabesque of signs and symbols. An observer, used to familiar relations between color and shape, will easily recognize certain forms that refer to actual objects or phenomena and reduce the composition to a sum of naive associations. However, the moment we think we are sufficiently absorbed in the rhythmic movement led by the line, we are awakened from our slumber, directly facing the outside world – the reflection of reality in the imprinted mirror. Through the act of perception, the spheres of the mirror become reflections of reality and they invite the observer to interact; if we move from our point of view only a millimeter, the reflection changes along with the whole experience. Reflection variations are infinite, so through the fragments of reality, the observer can see the ugly or beautiful things or go through a wide array of emotions. 

The fragments of reality, present in special units, within a consistent dynamic structure, respond and directly face the strong rhythm of the pictorial and structural organization of the whole. In this manner, imagination and reality encounter in the same matter, although such reality – framed and deformed with pre-endued characteristics – is necessarily illusory and paradoxical. Constant transformation in the structural levels of the rhythmic pattern becomes the starting point of artistic experience.

Prof. dr. Ema Mazrak, art historian about the solo show Reflections, 2022.

“Dzejlana Karaman Pasic’s years of research and creative work were presented in an exhibition named Reflexions with more than 50 exhibits. Within an unbreakable chain, in a rhythmic and dynamic manner, we witness parts of autoreflexions of the artist creating, discovering, and finding solutions, absorbed in her search for her characteristic visual identity. The processes of such self-discovery, running along multiple paths, are interconnected through a recognizable organic sample in the form of a playful arabesque in vivid colors.

The cycles of compositions connected through a common theme or presentational concept are distinctive in the method of work used, with the mirror cycle particularly intriguing. In this part of the exhibition, we sense the author’s implied invitation to “dive into” her world and live in it at least for an instant. The mirrors of different circular formats, fragmented in parts of compositions or used in installations, reveal layered remnants of the artist’s past. In the most part, they are expressed by choosing various types of materials, which reflect the poetic dimension through a variety of textures and their erosion, patina, and deliberate adherence to the principle of saturation and insistence on decoration. A new level of reality is opened in the recipient’s eye: time, both past and present, is reduced to an instance of impression.”

Artist’s statement

I explore the art substructure created by using materials that have stopped serving their primary, i.e. consumer function, such as jewelry, lace, table cloth, and other recycled materials. In this manner, I produce an unusual contrast between the harshness and robustness of format on one hand and the softness of delicate, subtle details on the other.

I focus on dense structure, impregnated with pictural values created by cumulating layers of different materials or color applications and strokes in the substructure. This treatment ensures fantastic possibilities for developing and enhancing form. In one of such adventures of exploring art substructure, I start from the painting as a material fact. It is created as a result of turning matter into form, a form into a sign, and a sign into a code system. By connecting and reshaping material configurations, the surface of the painting turns into a suggestive and associative field, the material nature of which is indicated and highlighted with a densely impregnated substructure and/or with wide brush strokes. In matter pervaded with pronounced dynamism, the spatial movement of shapes of different origins is consistently followed or complemented with sign elements. In their encounter, a sign determines the path one’s eye should follow or points to a spatial field followed or complemented by a shape in an imaginary sense. By playing with symbols and signs in the structural matter, sometimes I achieve the effect of tension and sometimes of peace and harmony.