Enchanted Wood. Original silkscreen, 1981.
Ivan Rabuzin was a Croatian naive painter and one of the most eminent lyric painters of the 20th century in Croatia. For many years he worked as a carpenter, until he began painting in his 35th year. He had a characteristic pastel palette with mild, pleasing, bright colors, which made his artwork quiet and peaceful. There are always nature and rural motives especially from Croatian Zagorje and we can usually see landscapes with hills, puffy clouds and sun, oversized colorful flowers, small villages, forests, fields etc. Rabuzin’s artwork is characterized by perfect organization of space, and stylization of forms and gentle gradation of nuances and most important – circles. For him a circle is a basic form in nature, which he transformed into a hill, a flower, a cloud, a tree crown and the sun. He usually made gradation or whole forms with points or circles arranged in strict rhythmic strings. Perspectives and proportions are adapted to the meaning represented in the painter’s consciousness. Oversized flowers, like those from the graphic, are a symbol of life, infinity, birth and youth, and universal harmony and paradise. They are characteristic for his artwork. Objects stand out in size but also in color and position, and they often radiate the light in the form of light points that extend from them. The accent which is achieved by opposing warm and cold colors, also indicates his skills and ability to make masterpieces. This composition is full of contrasting colors – green and red, which are calmed by white and blue tones. The flowers in the foreground seem to set the stage for this Rabuzin’s magical forest.