Sanja Jovic Critique by Timothy Warrington

Sanja Jovic is a wonderfully talented expressionist and surrealist artist from Belgrade, Serbia. A passion for photography emerged at the age of 17 and later turned into a strong and intrinsic connection with various channels of artistic expression. Jovic experiments with a diverse array of mediums including charcoal and pastel on paper, oil on canvas as well as photography and, as a reflective and contemplative artist, she describes her art as her diary and an outlet for her ongoing inner journey. Sanja can endlessly express herself and allows her art to transform and develop in parallel with her person. In fact, her art can be seen to grow and change in harmony with her idiosyncratic evolution. Jovic commenced her creative undertakings with a joyous, cheerful and bright colour pallette combined with a dreamy and surreal subject matter of fantasy and magic that shared ideas and philosophies with artists such as Dalì and Chagall. With time, this artist ventured into the unknown and more hidden dimensions of her being allowing spontaneity and primordial ideas to take over her creative process leading to a more decisive sense of poetic mystery and instinctive vision enriched with deeper connections to the inherent levels of her subconscious. It is clear that Jovic is an artist that is gifted with a curious and inquisitive mind who possesses the analytical ability to discover new perspectives and horizons with each composition and line of work. From an artistic standpoint, she redefines her focus from the surreal to the mysterious and then from black and white to the research of light itself discovering new horizons and creative territories at every opportunity. Sanja’s everchanging artworks and styles certainly define her as a multifaceted artist who cannot be limited or confined to an artistic movement or style as she is led by her art and her heart to fiercely challenge artistic norms within herself and around her.
 
In relation to art history, Jovic has a true affinity with surrealism and can be said to draw inspiration from Ernst and his magical dragons, wizards and dreamlike creatures. Albeit her styles are rich and diverse, there is common ground in the thought process of these two fabulous artists. Both artists convey a fondness for fantasy as well as being extremely expressive and unique in their compositions. They share a deep desire to liberate their subconscious with the root of their creations being self-expression, whether positive or negative, leading to their feelings and deepest inner thoughts being poured out onto canvas provoking a sincere and profound emotional response in the audience. Of course, it cannot be denied that  some aspects of Munch’s explosive energy is present in Jovic’s confident use of shape and form that allows for such intensity and evocative power.
 
Expressionism and Romanticism rarely meet on canvas but parallels can also certainly be drawn between Jovic and Turner with regards to the artist’s relationship with light and the process to tame and control chiaroscuro. Compositions consisting of dark hues, mysterious landscapes and compositions of barely recognizable subjects demonstrate a very attentive and pondered approach to the capture of reflection and the warmth of colour. Turner and Jovic share an affection for thought-provoking and dramatic scenes and both artists have the ability to transport the spectator to intensely dramatic yet inherently silent worlds of elegant intrigue.
 
As Jovic is a unrestrained creative force, one must also widen the spectrum, and in relation to Jovic’s darker and more mystical works connections can be made with Schiele as well as Giacometti. An impressive intellectual imagination as well as an evocative technique finds its conclusions in refined and highly distinctive artworks where anonymous subjects are saturated with strength, character and personality. Jovic allows her artwork to communicate in its own artistic language, giving her art the ability to develop into anything it wants, resulting in meaningful and powerful compositions that radiate a rare, elegant and distinctive form of beauty.
 
Sanja Jovic does not belong to one particular movement as her styles dance along the borders of Informalism, Lyrical Abstraction, Symbolism and German Expressionism thus confirming her immense skill and multifaceted creativity.