Mitja Ficko

graduated from the Academy of Fine Arts, Ljubljana (ALUO) in 1999. In 2002, he earned his master’s degree from the same academy with prof. Metka Krašovec. In 2003, he won the Golden Bird Award for his series of paintings titled ‘Stones’. His paths with ALUO crossed again in 2018, when he started teaching there as an Assistant Professor. In 2023, this was followed by a promotion to Full Professor. In his works, Ficko explores the boundaries and coexistence of worlds, levels of existence and ways or styles of painting. More than the final static representation of an object or scene, this concerns a dialectic between their emergence – materialisation and disappearence – dematerialisation. To him, a painting is a process, the coexistence and intertwinement of the abstract and the figurative. Since 1997, Ficko has shown his work in solo and curated group exhibitions in Slovenia and worldwide. He lives and works between Ljubljana and Leipzig.

The ‘collage principle’ of Ficko’s painting relocated to the structure of a painting – to multi-layering, covering and placing elements alongside each other – where the image is composed via reconstructing its spatial and compositional framework. This image composition strategies are also a response to the effects of digitalisation and its interactive, intertextual and hypertextual form and content.

Multi representativeness and navigation through windows into exhibition spaces offer a new form of hibridity that is based on spatial and stochastic connections. Diverse possibilities of editing, modifying, verifying and composing images are also enabled by the graphic tablet which Ficko uses for sketching. Its traces are for example visible in fragmentary artistic interventions by applying graphic grids with points and lines, which are included in the available models of the tool, and also compositions of rectangles., ‘windows/frames/Screens’, which give the impression of pasting images inside images. /…/ Ficko’s paintings are established as imaginary places that belong to the mind where the representational sphere is entirely fluid and where the transfer between reality and imagination can flow smoothly, These places often look back at us – quite literally, with eyes looking out of the painting, while concurrently being the entrance points into it. They are the eyes of characters, but even more so a multitude of disembodied eyes strewn all over the canvas that are reminiscent of Argus Panoptes and that create an all-seeing painting, which a viewer’s gaze can never really take in in its entirety.
(Text: Nadja Gnamuš)