Lauba will host Stipan Tadić, one of Zagreb’s best known contemporary artists, for his exhibition ‘Croatian Mountains’ which showcases a series of oil paintings on canvas and glass. Expect natural landscapes largely devoid of humans, and depictions of Sljeme, the forested peak of the Medvednica mountain range. Painted without a photographic template, the images are conjured wholly from memory, an interior expression of the landscape that heavily invokes Croatian 'Naïve art', self-taught representations of rural life, an artistic tradition with a strong local legacy.
Dismissing his academic training, Tadić says he is 'tired of all those things the modernist professors teach.' 'I wanted the freedom to paint what I want. We spent one to two years painting and were then told to find our own style. I just wanted to have no style and to be left alone to paint.’
This exhibition is certainly a departure from his previous work at the Student Centre Gallery where he illustrated his life story in the form of a comic-strip covering the walls of the room. Nevertheless, in its engagement with the landscapes of memory, it is a fresh idea for a body of work and takes a similarly confessional and personal angle on the material.
The exhibition at Lauba will be accompanied by a series of five lectures, running from 20 January to 2 February.