Wooden world of Peter Zoričák 

Duration of exhibition: 27. 07. – 18.10. 2006

Peter ZoričákFor Peter Zoričák, a professional historian and archivist who is a long-term enthusiast for history and a graduate of the Faculty of Arts of the Jan Evengelista Purkyně University in Olomouc, creative carving is a hobby. As an amateur artist-beginner, Zoričák, as many unqualified artists, has concentrated on general aesthetic rules and academic sculpting. That he is interested in fine arts, particularly sculpting, was clear from his early work. His artistic attention transformed into an urge to change wood into talking figures. Zoričák sought to transform his inner feelings into a sculpture. Strong handwork distinguishes him from other fellow artists, past or contemporary, using the same methods of work.

Folk art-inspired sculptures and reliefs required what Peter Zoričák followed in his later work - his natural sense of composition. Nativity scenes, Adoration of the Magi, Adoration of Shepherds and saints are the scenes that Zoričák treats in his work. These scenes follow rigorous Christian codes and Zoričák uses a balanced composition to emphasize a single central line that represents dominant universal truth of a single God in gothic and iconographical art.

Zoričák borrows from folk art. What he borrows are not folk topics and elements, but methods of work, simplification and use of folk elements as part of artist´s statement and atmosphere. A hat is not what makes a sculpture a folk art. It is a component helping to communicate information about folk art regions, fairy-tales and songs. Zoričák avoids descriptive pictures if not necessary and often uses simplification and condensation. Zoričák has learnt how to work with simplified expressions, use them wisely, searches for new opportunities within the limits of folk culture.

Foreign visitors see his sculptures as an original perspective on Slovakia and its people. The style the artist uses – so called “folk-Zoričák style” – helps him to develop his work with wood and colours and transform his perspective on world, life and his philosophy into pieces of art.
Native of the Záhorie region and close to Tatry and Ždiar, Zoričák is a long-time inhabitant of Kremnica, a famous mining town and centre of mining culture. His nativity scenes and carved sheep shelters are installed vertically, one after another, similarly to the nativity scenes on gothic altars. Zoričák carves reliefs with many figures as well as single-figure sculptures and sculptural groups.

Zoričák makes sculptures that can speak. You can read their mood and character or a situation they are in. The sculptures are the embodiment of the author, his attitude and optimism. They convey author´s energy and forward it to others. Zoričák is a proficient carver using special means of expression and colours. Despite repeated artistic expression, his communication with wood and the communication of a viewer with his sculpture are never the same.
(text by Martin Mešša)

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