Exhibition > Past > SEB Gallery

SEB Gallery 26.03.2003-25.04.2003


My home is my castle

Ivar Kaasik has for many years lived in Berlin. He left Estonia in 1990s and has ever since worked as a jeweller. His large oil paintings reflect author\'s close contact with contemporary visual culture.

Ivar Kaasik (1965) can obviously be classified to belong among \"the lost sons\". Among those, who were born and who started their studies in Estonia, but whose life later was mainly spent abroad. Kaasik is not a foreign Estonian in its classical sense, his departure was not a forced one and the return would have been at the first sight an easy procedure. But there are several reasons, why he is still walking along the streets of Berlin. One of them is his creation that talks to the things, which are happening in the capital of modern art and which have no equivalent in Estonia.Actually there even does not exist a language, in which to talk about them.


Still, everything started so politely. In the beginning of the 1980ies Kaasik studied architecture in the ESAI, but swithced the speciality in the middle of the decade and graduated from the Institute in 1992 as a metal artist. Already then we could have found him one year in Halle, where Kaasik studied in the art and design university. After graduating from the ESAI took place an already decisive turn: the artist left Estonia and is today already a member of a German artists\' association. For Kaasik, who works as a jeweller, the current exposition of paintings is still not the first one: he has participated in exhibitions since the year 1988, incl. his hometown Kuressaare.


At the present exhibition it is possible to see 16 large-format oil paintings that have been painted within the last two years. At the first glance we are dealing with portraits, but which portraits really! A boy in a sailor\'s shirt stares at us intensively, a woman\'s face that is fog-covered can hardly be detached from the background, and there are also a large number of dogs. According to the words of Kaasik for himself there exists no essential difference between an animal and a man, anima and humana: animals are humans and vice versa. But the way, how such experience as the truth is brought to the viewer, deserves additional attention.


Works of Kaasik are paintings, being simultaneously cliches and old stereotypes in their  immortal nudity, but at the same time equally aware of their position and ready to use it as much as possible. Highly effective surface handling and extremely essence-true approach is only a step away from a postcard, but this step is a significant one. Kaasik\'s paintings are as being in love in themselves in a narcissistic manner, but they are also very well aware of  it. The author does not use any painting technique-related \"tricks\", also he does not detach in panic from the visual culture of the modern society, even though he undoubtedly has the possibilities for both forms of action. Kaasik is not interested in escaping. He is here. Largely, uproaringly and lethally beautifully.

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