Cortesi Gallery
Ivan Picelj - Candra, 1965; wood, painted metal, 100×100×6.5cm, photo Damir Fabijanić, courtesy Anja Picelj-Kosak
Ivan Picelj - CTS-I, 1966; painted metal, wood, 90×90×7.5cm, photo Damir Fabijanić, courtesy Anja Picelj-Kosak
Ivan Picelj - Surface LIX, 1964; Wood, brass, aluminium, 60×60×3.5cm, photo Damir Fabijanić, courtesy Anja Picelj-Kosak
Ivan Picelj - Surface LVI, 1964; wood, brass, 70×70×4cm, photo Damir Fabijanić, courtesy Anja Picelj-Kosak
Ivan Picelj - Surface XXX, 1963; wood, 100×100×3cm, photo Damir Fabijanić, courtesy Anja Picelj-Kosak
Ivan Picelj - Surface XIII, 1962; Painted wood, 58.5×58.5×7.3cm, photo Damir Fabijanić, courtesy Anja Picelj-Kosak
Ivan Picelj - Surface XVII, 1962; painted wood, 40.5×40.5×5cm, photo Damir Fabijanić, courtesy Anja Picelj-Kosak
Ivan Picelj - Hetos 2, 1971; aluminium, wood, 37.5×40.5×6cm, photo Damir Fabijanić, courtesy Anja Picelj-Kosak
Ivan Picelj - CM-3-II, 1964-66; print, acrylic, chipboard, 102.5×102.6×1.8cm, photo Damir Fabijanić, courtesy Anja Picelj-Kosak
Ivan Picelj - Untitled, ; silkscreen on paper, 68.2×68.2cm, photo Damir Fabijanić, courtesy Anja Picelj-Kosak
Ivan Picelj - CM-3-II, 1964-66; print on canvases on 4 wooden panels, 100.5×100.5×4.5cm, photo Damir Fabijanić, courtesy Anja Picelj-Kosak
Ivan Picelj - CM-2-II, 1963/64; collage on cardboard, 64.4×64.4cm, photo Damir Fabijanić, courtesy Anja Picelj-Kosak
Ivan Picelj - Untitled, silkscreen on paper 68.1×68.1cm, photo Damir Fabijanić, courtesy Anja Picelj-Kosak

Ivan Picelj

Ivan Picelj (Okučani, 1924 – Zagabria, 2011) è stato nella sua carriera pitture, sculture, grafico, designer. Ha studiato all’Accademia di Belle Arti di Zagabria tra il 1943 e il 1946, abbandonando poi gli studi per continuare una ricerca sperimentale e lontana dalle imposizioni del linguaggio ufficiale. La sua attività di artista inizia nel 1948, ed è nel 1951 che, con gli architetti Bernardo Bernardi, Zdravko Bregovac, Zvonimir Radić, Boidar

Raica, Vjenceslav Richter, Vladimir Zarahović e i pittori Vlado Kristl e Aleksandar Srnec fonda Exat 51, il primo gruppo astratto della ex Jugoslavia, attivo durante la prima metà degli anni Cinquanta nell’allora dominante clima del realismo socialista. Svolgendo un ruolo chiave nel panorama culturale croato, il programma di Exat 51 era fortemente orientato verso l’astrattismo e la sintesi delle arti, richiamandosi al costruttivismo russo e alle esperienze Bauhaus. Nel 1959 Picelj ha iniziato una lunga collaborazione con la Denise René Gallery di Parigi, e altre gallerie internazionali come la Howard Wise di New York, la Baruch Gallery a Chicago, e la Galleria del Cavallino di Venezia. All’inizio degli anni’60 è stato fondatore e animatore di Nove Tendencije, ricoprendo anche il ruolo di graphic designer del movimento e della rivista BIT international. A partire da quegli anni Picelj ha lavorato a diversi libri d’artista a edizione limitata, coinvolgendo nella realizzazione gli amici artisti tra i quali Richter, Alviani, Vasarely nel 1962 il manifesto dal titolo Per un’arte attiva che mostrava chiaramente la sua inclinazione al pensiero d’avanguardia. Le sue opere sono presenti in musei e istituzioni quali il Museum of Modern Art di New York, il Victoria & Albert Museum di Londra, il Georges Pompidou di Parigi, il Boymans Museum a Rotterdam. Dal 2012 il Museo di Arte Contemporanea di Zagabria conserva, oltre a un nucleo di sue opere, il suo Archivio e biblioteca: dono importante fatto da Anja Picelj-Kosak all’istituzione, al pubblico e agli studiosi contemporanei. 

Ivan Picelj (Okuani, 1924–Zagreb, 2011) was a painter, sculptor, designer and graphic designer. A student at the Fine Arts Academy in Zagreb between 1943 and 1946, he abandoned his studies to begin experimental research that moved away from the impositions of the official art language.

In 1951, together with architects Bernardo Bernardi, Zdravko Bregovac, Zvonimir Radi, Boidar Raica, Vjenceslav Richter and Vladimir Zarahovi, and painters Vlado Kristl and Aleksandar Srnec, Picelj founded the EXAT 51 group (Experimental Atelier 1951). This was the first Yugoslavian abstract art group, active during the first half of the fifties in the then-dominant climate of socialist realism. The group played an important role in Croatian art; its program advocated the synthesis of all visual art, an idea inspired by the legacy of Russian constructivist avant-garde and Bauhaus experiences.

In 1959, Picelj began a successful collaboration with the Denise René Gallery in Paris, as well as with international galleries such as Howard Wise in New York, Baruch Gallery in Chicago and Galleria del Cavallino in Venice. In the early sixties, he was one of the founders of the New Tendencies movement, which shared several central themes with Picelj’s work, covering for the group as the role of editor of the BIT international magazine, and for the designers of posters and publications that were linked to it.

Since that time, Picelj has produced several limited-edition artists’ books, collaborating with Richter, Vasarely and Alviani artists, amongst others. In 1962, he wrote the manifesto titled, For Active Art, which clearly shows his inclination towards avant-garde thinking.

His works have been exhibited in many renowned local and international institutions and are included in several international museum collections, including the Museum of Modern Art in New York, Victoria & Albert Museum in London, Centre Georges Pompidou in Paris and Boymans Museum in Rotterdam.

Since 2012, the Museum of Contemporary Art in Zagreb has maintained a collection of Picelj’s work, as well as his archives and library. These formed an important gift from Anja Picelj-Kosak to the institution, contemporary art scholars and the public.