Jagoda Buić Contemporary Tapestry – News: Promising Art and Culture pleasure in the significant Belgrade Museum of Contemporary Art First, with Exhibition Jagoda Buić: The Essence of Fiber, until 26. February 2024. On the 4th and 5th levels of the Museum of Contemporary Art.

Jagoda Buić (Split 1930-Venice 2022) is a celebrated world name in multimedia Contemporary Art. In the range of her creativity, the main identifying mark is on tapestry, which she worked on from 1962 to the 1990s.
The basic content of the “Essence of Fiber” exhibition is 11 tapestries created between 1962 and 1977.

Particularly, the author of the exhibition, S. Mitić, cites that J. Buić released the tapestry from the traditionally supporting art discipline and realized it as an authentic artistic medium. She changed the tapestry by creating volumes in the space. Then, the artist established a type of woven composition, up to a completely independent installation in space. So my suggestion is to take a closer look at the texture/structure of the applied interlacing. One can recognize elements that originate from weaving traditions. of the weaving techniques of the Balkans and the Orient (weaving of smooth or embossed warp face, kneeling, slits, sumac…).

Jagoda Buić Contemporary Tapestry – Pešter weavers and exciting results

I know enough about weaving traditions, and the amount of literature, as well as artworks. Hence, definitions of the source of inspiration. Namely, it does happen to insist only on the natural character of the Balkan Region, and a departure from tradition. However, I see her traces even in the microstructure of the monumental wool sculptures. I mean this from the belief in the alternatives of every Modernity. Either to survive and last through changes or to remain a part of History (in this case, art).

In the early 1970s, Jagoda Buić met local weavers and their archaic weaving techniques on the Pešter plateau. That was a moment when she discovered the means for artistic expression and then realized the highest principles of modern visual art.

In this regard, Mrs. Buić explained the key to success with her Pešter Team:  “They used to weave as they began in childhood, as their grannies worked. We met after they already spent the whole youth weaving. I discovered the path by which they masterfully followed me and materialized the essence of my idea. And all together, we became a winning combination, completing our capabilities. By enjoying our work, under no pressure, our cooperation produced exciting results”. Thus, the new Art from the roots of this Region grew into a precisely clear artistic language that reaches global archetypes.

Coloristic moments of Jagoda Buić’s oeuvre

Regarding colors, the exhibition includes two of a total of 11 tapestries. But nine artworks are within the scale of undyed wool, from white to shades of brown to jet black. There are only two multicolored tapestries. The first one is her first famous significantly larger work. Here is a Reminiscence of Dubrovnik, 1962, in shades of purple with hints of orange. In the second sample Fiesta, 1968, harmoniously combines a bright palette with dark brown. It’s the abstract geometric composition with large slits which introduces the wall surface as an equal artistic element.

The essentialism of fibers, threads, textures, and forms, in the case of Jagoda Buić, grows into a magnificent textile sculpture. That is why reached the highest standard of modern tapestry in the world.

Jagoda Buić Contemporary Tapestry – shades of natural coarse wool, slits, and relief

On the tapestries in the spectrum of shades of natural wool, I notice the rusticity of the yarn and textures, as a novelty since the 1960s. Coarse yarn, even non-spun wool fiber, interlacing hypertrophy, and excessive sizes of works.

Monologue II, 1964. 166 x 133 cm. Museum of Contemporary Art.

The artwork above characterizes the initial phase of research novelties as deep relief texture. The artist uses the village women’s weaving skills. She began research aiming at the application of slit weaves in modern tapestry art. Also, within simple color scale of natural materials achieved a massive relief textures. The deviation from the wall surface gradually occurs. First, the artist uses long slits in the fabric to play shadows against the light wall background. Then the monumental woven forms, stand supported in the space. And finally, works that are not on this display, autonomous, stable textile sculptures in representative spaces.

Isabella, 1969. Combined weaving interlaces, of wool, and sisal. 250 x 180 cm. Museum of Contemporary Art.

The artwork illustrates the high potential of Jagoda Buić, with her dominant expression as a famous artist worldwide. It consists of a series of striking artistic elements in local wool. The rhythm of geometric forms, a prominent relief texture, and various weaving techniques continue with free long ribbon forms. Due to the absolute freedom of composition and its realization, the wall surface causes an active artistic effect.

Woven sculptures, free cylindrical space volumes

Jagoda Buić Contemporary Tapestry – Vertical II and Black Trace are the most stable of the woven sculptures on this display. They are the property of the Museum of Contemporary Art in Belgrade, purchased after the exhibition in the “Museum Salon” in 1974.

Vertical II (left) is a completely free cylindrical volume in space. The bodice with the decorative interweaving of raw coarse wool gives stability and impresses as an ornate supporting architectural column. Ruffled sisal softens and enlivens, for a textile, a rather strict form.

(Detail right) the closed ring, split at the top with slits, is smoothly woven, and lightweight. But below, there is a decorative game of different rings. Fine effects with dense relief loops and layers of loose tousled strands of sisal. A heavy, rustic diagonal ribbed texture is at the bottom of the vertical.

Jagoda Buić Contemporary Tapestry – material “plays” a primary role, in its own “opinion”

According to the Catalog summary, the basic expression and “opinion” in this structure have materials. So, J. Buić felt those marvelous, mostly rough processed wool, with even more robust horse hair, with accents of effective fibers (hemp fiber, cotton, sisal, wires…). She respected the nature of the materials and thus created an opus of a very special tapestry style. It is farthest from painting, subtly “sculpted”, completely independent in its own space and narrative.

Finally, full of impressions, I hope many people will take advantage of the extraordinary opportunity to experience this top art, literally and figuratively. The exhibition will be open until February 26, 2024.

My husband and I, as darkness sets in, the road leads further to the Ethnographic Museum. Interested in “Reading colors”, about which I will inform you soon.

Until then, with respect, Branka on Textiles

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