23 November - 16 December 2023
10 Putiki Street
Grey Lynn, Auckland, New Zealand
Nikolic’s paintings can be unruly, testing the tolerance of tasteful decorum with their raised voice and contentious tones. These wild polychrome adventures desire all our attention and seem prepared, if necessary, to stamp their feet to get it.
And yet for all their bolshie, flamboyant behaviour Nikolic’s paintings seem to be able to express a deeper, private dignity – all whilst donning their best party outfit. What fascinates me about them is that every element matters. One might assume that with paintings that flirt so demonstrably with excess, they would risk intemperance – go too far, but the paintings ultimately express a fine level of judgement and intuition that is rare and critical to their resolution.
Does Nikolic want that paintings shoulder the philosophical loading that the great abstract expressionists desired? Does he believe that systemic process and material are sufficient ingredi-ents in the making of paintings? Unlikely. Does he believe in the magical, communicaive power of colour and for it to be an agent of psychological and emotional transformation? You bet he does. And so, what Nikolic has set out to achieve is a synthesis of various arcane chromatic theories with a highly personal investigation of pigment and its unpredictable behaviour, in the hope that it emboldens our transformation.
Being’s believin’ is the 12th solo exhibition with FJ & FJM and also serves as a celebration marking the publishing of “invocations of consciousness”, the first major monograph on Nikolic’s works. With a series of essays, most notably with an introduction by Juliana Engberg and a major text by Julie Ewington, invocations of consciousness places Nikolic’s paintings in a welcome historical context and offers insights into the conceptual and personal terrain that has underpinned his work. Ultimately each of the writers in this document, myself included, fall victim to the works themselves, so that whilst history and narrative might well seem to matter when comprehending Nikolic’s paintings, spend any time at all with them, and their experience, their impact is fully apprehended in the heart.
Andrew Jensen, November 2023