Jan Astner – COLORED GARDENS – series of drawings
The Colored Gardens is a series of black and white drawings. A world of fairy-tale plants, unusual forms, transformed symbols. Plants that are not plants, gardens that are not gardens. Full of details, details and microforms, precisely drawn with a calligraphic pen. Drawn with precision, as we write letters – each character, each line is consciously marked on the paper. An imaginary, unreal enchanted garden. The whole series of drawings is a dream garden, imaginary, designed and created by the artist. Full of details, leaves, flowers, roots, stems and petals. Full of plastic spaces, which, although drawn with black lines on a white background, create a rug of colorful, lush ornaments.
Ivo Alvarone is a color painter. He loves intense, bright colors, and plays with their combinations and variety of forms. It contrasts and weaves them into charming and unpretentiously intense, unique ranges. Because nature is very rich and very colorful. In a series of drawings, The Colored Gardens, Alvarone translated his approach to color into drawing. The artist urges us to open the gates to imagination, to translate a monochrome drawing into a sensual world of colors.
It is also a perverse look at the world of plants, which, although we recognize the richness of its forms, we perceive as generally beautiful, not paying attention to details. The flowers and plants in the world of Alvarone do not reproduce the natural world, but create new species. This multiplication of species is a conscious action. A sheer warning: the world of plants is shrinking as a result of human activity, and the variety of its forms decreases. Alvarone pays attention to our perception of nature. We do not admire its forms, individual plants, we generalize our view, while each plant is a microcosm of beauty, a microcosm of a rich palette of colors and forms. Alvarone urges us to stop and admire a blade of grass, the fanciful shape of a leaf, and an unusual color of the flower. In detail, and not for a moment, but for a while.
„Coloring” in the title of the series is to encourage the recipients to increase their sensitivity. It is an appeal to pay attention to what is around us. Let’s take a look at how the Japanese admire cherry blossoms. Sakura Hanami, the festival of cherry blossoms, is one of the most important events in Japanese culture. Sakura Hanami time is for the Japanese a period of exceptional beauty and a special atmosphere. It is a holiday that is associated with joy, the fleeting moment and satisfaction with life. The traditional Japanese custom of admiring the beauty of flowers also has a wider meaning. The delicate, fragile, short-lived beauty of flowers is seen as a metaphor for life itself.
The artist consciously gave his series of drawings a dreamlike character. Alvarone plants resemble real gardens, but are not real gardens. It is a series of drawings suspended in imagination, in irrationality that is in contradiction with experience. A series of drawings that allows us to relate to an unreal reality.