VEDRAN KARADŽA TABULOV / Conscientious objection
Assemblages shown in this exhibition were created in the period between 2015 and 2019 as a kind of a personal catharsis that Vedran Karadža Tabulov considered to be an integral part of his artistic practice. For what is the purpose of a work that does not change, correct, modify or direct the author towards new horizons and perspectives? If there is no communication within, it is illusory to expect communication outside the studio, but here the word studio should be understood conditionally, since Vedran’s true workspace is by no means just his spatially convoluted Workshop: his efforts point to a much broader field of action, synchronicity, causality and interaction.
T.H.: A couple of words on your approach to assemblage…
V.K.T.: My work in this medium is almost exclusively based on the aesthetics and enjoyment of shaping finely balanced shapes. It is unburdened by meaning, explicit message, trend, actuality or problem; it is without premeditation and without prejudice, coercion or imperative, without a plan that I must adhere to except in a somewhat structural sense of the arrangement of the masses. It is liberated by the title, which – if it is there – will only support the potential and breadth of interpretation and, it would be nice, the experience of that realization. Only in this case does it cease to be a dull and beautiful „piece of art“, it goes beyond, and through mutual titration with the viewer it comes to life as a true reality that neither portrays nor represents but simply is; for it has passed through both mind and emotion, and has come to fruition in intelligence and communication.
V.K.T.: A word that comfortably hosts my many years of work is exactly this – play. Playing without beginning or end, a play of paying tribute and one of the possibilities of celebrating the beauty of existence and the ability of beauty to play itself; pure larpurlatism free from worries which, therefore, was never deprived of its own truth, logic, philosophy and poetics, through instantaneous or subsequent interpretation, but never assumed, conditioned or driven, because then it simply would not be what it is. I always let my realization be understood and felt in accordance with the affinities of the one who observes, to dress it as one wants and without obligation, into their own custom suits, to translate it without strict instructions.
T.H.: You don’t perceive yourself as a creator…
V.K.T.: I am glad that I do not consider myself a creator but rather a resonator and modulator, and an equal participant in the change and application of substances, properties, opportunities and outcomes that they can lead. In that sense, I have been offered the freedom to entertain and work out all that I have at my disposal, to the pleasurable and satisfying ‘finishedness’, the comfortable preparedness, the specific density and intensity of the pervasive components, processes and feelings that have to be united in the very state that the realization manifests. I feel nice and comfortable in a position that liberates by the fair optimum of responsibility, gratitude and respect for all that is necessary and given, for all those vital preconditions of participation (including the gift of talent), as a specific effort with which we contribute to this play. That is a quality that is not only mere knowledge and possibility, but rather an ability that nourishes and refreshes the art of life as a whole through particular artistic acts and facts.
T.H.: How do you perceive your work?
V.K.T.: Thinking about my work, I find it interesting to see the whole process, the realization itself, and myself as the protagonist. All this is a dynamic system that pulsates with the feedback energy of ideas, matter, emotion and knowledge activated by my clear intentions. My assemblages are almost improvisatios, made on the basis of knowing the principles and application of free choices, and – at any stage of work – we’re constantly offered fractal restlessness of possibilities, always best regulated by my own instantaneous suggestiveness, aligned with my attention and with not yet fully understood codes of my aesthetic affinities. However, in addition to all the categories that have connected and separated my work, I would like to emphasize the following: the exactness of interpretation, or freedom of interpretation, are beginning to be reflected and refracted in me by increasingly clear questions of ethics and aesthetics, play and responsibility, or in the answers of form and content.
T.H.: There’s also the story about an island…
V.K.T.: I had a small Workshop on the island from which I came from, though it was not big enough for everything that was to be accomplished. Still, it was irreplaceable for me because it had (and still has today) that most important predisposition: the possibility of continuous work, respect for the nulla dies sine linea credo, and thus maintaining unity with my space, which thus ceases to be a full-time workplace. So, it becomes a vital environment, a creative womb in which I feel safe, complete and free to develop myself and what I do. Being in tune with such a space means living your business and being present in the full sense of the word. My instinctive attitude to what I do, whatever I do, is increasingly turning into lucid realization of what and why I really want and need to do. In this sense, it is perfectly clear to me that, while working on the island, sometimes I indulged in the creative element so much that I intuitively started and consciously continued to discipline myself by engaging in the environment of natural planting, revitalization, renovation and landscaping – activities that I would dare call “appropriate land art in progress“.
T.H.: In this context, what is the basis for your work?
V.K.T.: The real basis and refuge of my work is the broad context of living with all its possibilities and unpredictability, in which only with good will and clear intention can the desired course be maintained. It is a vast world in which the only difference between getting lost and finding one’s self is created by complete affirmation of oneself as a person through one’s own affinities and talents.
T.H.: Thank you.
V.K.T.: You are welcome.
VEDRAN KARADŽA TABULOV was born in Split on April 28, 1977. Eighteen years later, he finished high school and enrolled in the Academy of Fine Arts in Široki Brijeg. He got his MA in Painting/Graphic Arts and his Art Professor title in 2002, in the class of Professor Igor Dragičević. Unable to do graphic arts upon finishing college, he started photographing, painting, improvising and spending more time on Drvenik Veli, where he continuously dealt with assemblage. During the following period, he juggled between making prints while on the coast and making assemblages while on the island, staying maximally focused on his creativeness. He’s interested in horticulture and environment art, inspired and limited by his island. That’s how it is today. He lives and works in Split – Solin – Drvenik Veli. He’s a member of HULU Split and HZSU.