vestiges of now
22 October - 21 November
10 Putiki Street
Grey Lynn, Auckland
Vestiges of Now is a new group of paintings by Tomislav Nikolic that extend his very personal and innovative approach to colour and especially the way that he invites it to colonise the canvas, the frame, the support and even the wall.
The genesis of most all of Nikolic’s works begins with his own response to other artworks he admires. The association diminishes as the particularities of each piece become evident but it is this conceptual conversation that he invites with other art that often provides the initial impetus.
What is clear though is that Nikolic’s work is utterly and magnificently idiosyncratic. Colour is combined in unorthodox ways and the decisions that he takes about where the boundaries of the painting reside, negate the traditional notion of a fixed picture plane in favour of an object that exists in the round.
Thus Nikolic's paintings resist convenient categories. They jostle with the restraint of much minimal abstraction, preferring to celebrate colours’ wilfulness and physicality rather than illustrate its character. His capacity to make work that is both both elegant and bolshie, sensitive and wild is extraordinary. Often the paintings feel like portraits, some modest, some grand - their personality captured in every chromatic adjustment and structural decision.
In Vestiges of Now Nikolic again presents a group seven paintings. Most are modestly scaled and operate within a chromatic logic that is particular to each, but part of an overarching approach to colour that has been central to his practice for many years.
Nikolic’s work has been widely collected in Australasia. Major works, both paintings and sculpture, have been acquired by the National Gallery of Victoria and more recently by the Chartwell Trust in Auckland. The response to his work at Art Basel Hong Kong in recent years has been nothing shot of extraordinary with works going into multiple collections in China, Hong Kong, Japan, Philipines, Korea and Switzerland.
Andrew Jensen, October 2015