Miha Štrukelj: Construction site 1-6
Oil, graphite, charcoal, masking tape, pastel on canvas, 190 x 260 cm, 2013
Courtesy: The Hilger Collection, Vienna
The motif is inspired from a photo I happened to snap while walking past a construction site on my usual walking route along the Ljubljanica River. Behind the failed Kiparna Café, next to the Archives of the Republic of Slovenia, a decrepit building was being pulled down. The light, the dust, the machines and the ruins, everything was just perfect for photography. On the other hand, there was also the shock at seeing the old house pulled down and the setting brusquely altered.
As evidenced by the works Triptych – The City (2013), Construction Site 1-6 (2013), Alley I and Alley II (both 2014), the structure of Štrukelj's oil paintings is based on the deconstruction and reconstruction of a fundamental motif. Entirely abstract colour or empty fields reveal multiple structural layers of the painting, making his matter-of-fact depictions of city streets and construction sites appear heterogeneous and fragmented into the basic elements of a digital image. This is precisely why his painted images, sometimes retaining only pale traces of urban motifs, remind the viewer of a screen, the picture on it distorted as a result of interference. The images conceived by Štrukelj progressively lose their ties to reality and offer only fragmentary glimpses of city infrastructure, thus transmitting to the viewer his personal perception of the contemporary living environment. Digital images are predominantly used as mere basic forms to be transformed and reconstructed in the process of artistic creation. At the same time, these paintings, inextricably weaving together reality and fiction, allow the viewer to become an active participant in the joint creation of images. Nataša Kovšca
Miha Štrukelj: Tipped Over
Charcoal and pencil on wall, site-specific, 2015
Artist's web page: www.miha-strukelj.com