2nd August – 29th August 2008, Gallery Njivice, Njivice
The picturesque world of Dagmar Franolić is a world of lyrical impressions – the ones of dreamy landscapes, wondrous vedute and miraculous trees, that are drawn into her characteristic water-color. A color that is translucent and fluid, full of gentle and fine nuances. That is lightened up and watered down to chiming and clear consonance, but that is also unusually saturated – to a soft foggy sfumato. Beside the color, Dagmar’s specific line also exists here, accompanying the color, but not merging with her. It follows the color, but also slips away and withdraws from her. But that same color, nevertheless, respects her and together with her builds an imaginary visual world of characteristic expression. And although everything starts up from reality here, it soon – trough imagination – rises up to fantasy, where reality and illusion, experience and remembrance, perception and illusion mix. It rises to border spaces between dream and wake, where the story semantically densifies, and the space broadens to some undefined and intangible categories, following other legitimacies.
Although the starting point in the painting of Dagmar Franolić is mimesis, it often experiences a metamorphosis during visual elaboration, becoming just a flow of reality (although, lyrically); that baths and dissolves in color and light. But it also becomes a starting point for the transformation of perception. Because the author, of the first part fills up our senses emitting to us images – tales about ambients of her own habitat and region, while of the other – reaches into the structure of her paintings, setting up new viewpoints (as from above) and building spatial relationships inside a firm linear raster.
When she speaks however, then she describes an atmosphere, so in these paintings there is no movement and dynamics, but some melancholic confinement. Hence comes that impression of timelessness, metaphysical ambiance and dreamlike meditativeness that threads trough Dagmar’s “magical landscapes” – lyrical, but emptied and desolate. Here it’s necessary to say that one part of these landscapes and vedute still visibly keep to figuration and in them the romantically-intimistic note is more pronounced. But it is apparent that either part of them is beginning to formally-semantically condense and synthesize, turning a sign into a symbol, while simultaneously stepping into a realm that borders with abstraction. In the first instance the authoress has activated us with her fables, in the other by her thoughtful approach.
When she speaks to us (and she speaks by color and line), we can almost sense the swelter of the drowsy, summer afternoon; the mystery of the amazing blue night; the mist that in the twilight or in the dreamy morning passes above the gardens. Or the warm droplets of the sudden, wholesome rain on the sea. But when she mentally activates us trough the symbolic of motives, the she “opens a window” into a new world, ambiguous and stratified, in which we suddenly become conscious how some invisible connecting threads spread deeply trough time and distantly trough space.
Inside that whole the authoress focuses on one of its parts – a special detail: the tree, that will from now on, it seems, seize special attention. Because the tree, symbolically, always was some special link between the earth and the expanse of the stars; some primordial symbol of life and a living symbol of the whole universe that is in unceasing renewal. The symbol of meditation and illumination, at last. Therefore the tree is a motive that is, in its morphological and symbolical manner, the humans everlasting and infinite well of inspiration, from the archaic times up to today, so it doesn’t surprise us that Dagmar Franolić has turned towards it.
Still, no matter whether she is counting a tale, or is turning to the symbol, her main means of expression, that define her as a painter are the watercolors. This author knows how to sophisticaly dose its dilution, its saturation and the amount of light that the color emanates. And therefore, thanks to exactly all this color, regardless of the motive, the painting of Dagmar Franolić is today professionally profiled, known and recognized.
Višnja Slavica Gabout, 2008.