Ján Kelemen -- Trance

Jana Berková

Although Ján Kelemen was trained as a graphic artist, the range of his artistic activities reaches beyond the boundaries defined by his special training in graphic art. His study of graphic art gave him an adequate preparation in drawing, which provided him with a solid basis for his further artistic activities. From the very beginning he has sought areas in graphic art for exploration and experimentation. Even his way of preparing the printing plate, the burning of the plate with the oxyacetylene cutter, or printing by means of the hydraulic press to produce relief print demonstrated an entirely new approach to work, and signalled his interest in space.

The perception of space as an integral part of the artwork is an important creative element in Kelemen's further work. Therefore his oeuvre covers a broad range from spatial disciplines - painting, graphic art and drawing - to installations and multimedia projects. His painting oscillates between the points of departure of Art Informel and Action Painting and the meditative levels of Abstract Expressionism. Nevertheless, he is critical of the heritage of classical art. This is characteristic of the departure from subjective gesture to the perception of the link between man and nature in the original, perhaps even Gauguin-like sense. This aspect has strengthened as a result of his participation in the Ekoart projects.

Thus a larger space opened for the artist to create sculpture, to work in wood and stone in situ and to produce spatial installations. In this way all fields of his work have been internally connected and have acquired a deeper sense reaching beyond playing with colour and form.