Alesandro Ljubicic: The Optimism of Flowers
– Says Alesandro Ljubicic in the title one of many oil paintings on display at the Scott Livesey Galleries. Born in central Bosnia and Herzegovina, the award-winning artist and entrepreneur specialises in oil paintings of the floral variety that sweeps across the canvas, deserving of praise for his style and technique. The unfathomable beauty informs this painter’s aesthetic, set apart from his peers using the impasto technique.
The heavily-layered pieces do not address weighty or profound themes. There are no demons or issues lurking beneath the surface of vibrant canvases. Instead, Ljubicic channels the opposite emotion without seeming too contrived. His collections are flower gardens that have a textured, three-dimensional quality, with layers of paint piled high enough to create their own shadows. The audience can trace the movement of his brush and palette knife. Taking a visual journey through these oil-painted landscapes evokes a feeling of lightness without appearing too shallow. The recent collections in the Scott Livesey Galleries and the Bega Valley Regional Gallery indicate that juxtaposing concepts highlight each other, pointing to an idea that happiness and vibrancy are on the same side of the coin as darkness and negativity.
More than that, Ljubicic, as an artist, also seems to reject the idea that art constantly has to relate deep political messages, especially in a time of social turbulence. Beauty on its own can be a rebellion of a different sort, profound in its own way. To tread the line between (literally) flowery aesthetics and a sharp defiance of convention is no easy feat. This is beauty for its own sake and nothing else. Energy and colour explodes onto the canvas in a style marked by the appearance of petals with every stroke, and the subject matter speaks volumes in the language of flowers.
Ljubicic does not limit himself to painting, either. The artist also owns The Sydney Art Store, founded after Ljubicic graduated from the National Art School in 2007. The business has grown exponentially in the last twelve years. As someone who has known the difficulties of sourcing his own materials, this is an incredibly resourceful move to fund his own expansive passions, especially when tubs of paint can cost $3,000 each.
Resourcefulness and optimism lies at the foundation of Alesandro Ljubicic’s work. His carefree method of painting is daring in its own right and executed admirably in his collections. In a fast-paced world, the whorls, petals and strokes on his canvases might even convince Casper & Casper to stop and smell the flowers.