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Alumni News |
Jan, 2020

Matej Knežević : All Inclusive Strategies at Greta Gallery in Zagreb

Opening: January 27, 2020
Greta Gallery, Zagreb Croatia

The exhibition called All-inclusive strategies is a new site-specific installation created at the Greta Gallery in Zagreb. Throughout the project, Matej explores the issues of creative labor, and the possibilities of intersections and influences of professional identities, metaphysically
motivated with the actor Tom Selleck. Despite the narrative being the formative line of the project, Matej investigates possible forms of visual expression of the story. This relationship between potential forms and contents is often being questioned through his artistic practice. The need do analyze professional identity definition, especially in current times, indicates the search for critical auto reflection. As an alter ego to this questioning process, Matej sought a marginal but recognizable personality and found him in the character of Tom Selleck.

The character and work of this cult actor, who strongly influenced a part of an 80’ssubculture is a scenery that awaits a visitor to the gallery. Tom is iconographically recognizable for his strikingly epic mustache as well as the characters he played, which in turn represented the relaxed, cool macho style of the time, but with responsibility, initiative, taste, and testosterone (Magnum PI, Three Men and a Baby...). But beyond the camera world, there is charisma and a certain amount of humor that his persona embodies. Crucial and interesting to this story is his professional divisiveness. Apart from an active and successful acting career, he has another parallel career - that of a farmer. Specifically, he lives on an avocado farm, which he grows, cultivates and distributes himself. According to Tom, that job balances him against the career of an actor. This split proved to be a crucial analytical point of Matej’s own professional balance between the active position of a physician in an operating room and an artist in a gallery. According to Jung, accepting your own multiple roles, as well as successfully maintaining any kind of balance (the one of everyday life, emotional, but also professional) is a key to physiological integrity (1). If one work or career balances the other one, and if the transfer of knowledge, experiences, and symbols is possible in both directions, then this is a winning situation. Only with more recent artistic production, Matej has allowed himself such a profession-driven conceptual process (2). All-inclusive strategies consequently represent an additional auto-reflection through a humorous lens, colored by the nostalgic sound of the eighties, with the goal of opening some new polygons of research.

The interrelationships and influences of these parallel professional relationships are probably exciting and unpredictable, and offer endless opportunities on both sides. Throughout this exhibition, it is obvious that Matej intentionally took this grateful position at the intersection of professions in a certain gray zone. and that it suits him well.

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