Robert Fišer / Binary Spaces
The Simplicity of Oppositions – The Two-Element Visual Spaces of Robert Fišer
Robert Fišer’s Binary Spaces are the result of the artist’s continuous search for possible gaps within classical art media. Metaphorically looking, his Wormhole seems to reflect the required interspace between the spheres in which Fišer’s artistic aspiration hovers in that quest. His journey to the “work of art” started very early in the course of his studies, and it emerged from his constant fear of painting what has already been painted. Fišer’s fear of his work not being stimulating enough, introduced the artist to the need for opening the pages on the theory of the visual, which were yet to be written. The position he sought was actually painted in Klee’s thesis that “art does not reproduce that which is visible, but it creates it”.
In an effort to reach the required support, the artist has cleansed the visual space of his work from all redundancy to the monochrome image field. In his cycle of monochrome canvases called Monochrome/Nameless surfaces, Fišer faced the space that many painters had already investigated, demanding the semantic and visual possibilities of the canvas. Using a brush and a sponge roller for better application on the surface, Fišer got two-field black or white monochromes that were free from any semantics while retaining the focus on the optical game that is generated when the light shines through them.
In the next cycle called Gentle Destruction, he went a step further by painting, but also by destroying the previously painted surfaces. With the process of destruction, the abrasion and sanding the canvas in order to obtain acrylic dust, enlarged images have now been led to the level of sculpture as they obtained the third and sometimes the fourth dimension.
Fišer’s destruction does not have a devastating run. Moreover, by intervening on the existing painted canvas, he is affirming that canvas, by expanding its possibilities beyond the forms of classical painting. Aart of this strategy is retained in the Binary Spaces. This is clearly indicated by the Transition in which the artist refers to his earlier Glass Full Of Picture, but this time he does not stack acrylic particles in a glass, but he compresses them into a cube placed in front of the picture.
Overall, Fišer is less engaged in painting and more focused on the object in the Binary Spaces. This is evidenced by the work of Bi, which destroys objects made of plaster. He breaks them to come to the plaster dust that is then used to present the objects’ negative. The dust from the broken ball spills into a rectangular form, leaving in its center a circle that invokes the negation of the existing sphere. The same is done with a cube, whose dust i spread into the circular shape, leaving a gap in the center of the circle, which at the imaginary level, occupies a physical cube that was once formed by that same dust. The parallelism expressed through the title – Bi – is reflected in the binary relations of the empty and full, or round and rectangular, embodied in the ancient idea of squaring the circle as the ideal of reaching fullness.
Tripoint and Wormhole are similar if we think about them through the idea of elaborating the visual game. While there was an earlier transition from sculpture to painting, Tripoint’s base was sculpture, or plaster objects subjected to destruction after they were photographed in natural size. The leftover dust was mixed with the binder, and the artist paints three lost objects on unprepared canvases. At a certain distance from the wall, there are photographs of objects where they are cut off as negatives. Through these snippets, visitors should look at the canvas from a certain point, to reach the ideal match between the negatives (blanks) and the painted forms. The same is true for Wormhole installation. A series of vertical and horizontal black lines surrounding white wall gaps create a continuum in which the only anomaly consists of two gaps. The first of them is the lack of a horizontal black line, which is physically placed in the space in front of the wall and which, at a certain angle of view, optically fills the whole installation; the other gap is vertical slit on the wall, filled with horizontal lines. The contrast between the black and white, infinite extensibility of black lines and gaps, as well as the binary rhythm between the horizontal and the vertical, makes the spatial continuum of the Wormhole – binary. This work also segments Fišer’s aspiration to use the extremes to achieve the only possible minimum achievable only in the binary system, recognized by Knifer, who was particularly aware the binarity in his works, writing in his Records the following: “There are two contrasting minimums – the ultimate contrast minima – white and black. There are two extremely contrasting minimums – black and white, but at the same time they are the fullest maxima. Completely, to the end, white, and completely, to the end, black. Black and white are at the same time the minimum and the maximum.”
Robert Fišer’s most recent cycle, in the context of his entire work, shows that he is an artist who does not stray, but continues to analyze the elements of previous cycles, using minimal means to achieve the most powerful visual and intellectual effect within his own artistic the world, deprived of intellectual puzzles and ramose metaphores.
Robert Fišer was born in Osijek in 1976. He graduated in 2012 at the Osijek Art Academy. He has been actively exhibiting since 2008, and has held several solo and group exhibitions so far. He has been awarded several awards for his work. He is a member of the Croatian Association of Artists Osijek and one of the founders of the Popup Project. He is engaged in painting and multimedia. He lives and works in Osijek.