The Turned Out Pocket: Haystack – Ivan Kožarić

8.1.–3.2.2020., Square of the 128th Brigade of the Croatian Army

A temporary hay sculpture near Korzo as a symbolic start of the harvest in the year of the European Capital of Culture.

Ivan Kožarić’s installation Haystack from 1996, after Dubrovnik and Zagreb, will findfinds its place in Rijeka at the very beginning of 2020, as a symbolic start to the harvest of artistic creation in a year rich in cultural events.

Displaced from its natural environment, the area of the suburban surroundings of Rijeka, and the time in which it is otherwise gathered, the hay compiled around the post in its centre appears as an astonishing totem in the public space of the square of 128th Brigade of the Croatian Army, as a hint of rurality alongside the main symbol of urbanity – Rijeka’s Korzo. In the time after Advent and during the Carnival, Kožarić creates a temporary sculpture out of unconventional material, an artistic situation that transforms the ordinary into something valuable with an almost alchemic principle. In contrast to the motionless, hard materials of the surrounding area, Kožarić introduces the texture and the smell of hay in the middle of winter, its permeability and transience, confirming his unmistakable sense of space and the playfullness with city points and symbols.

Placed in the centre of a square that bears a revealing name, the haystack is devoid of its useful purpose and becomes the city’s “acupuncture point”, a place where the cyclical restoration of nature, including life, is implied. The minimalism and conciseness of expression paired with modest material and a simple form is Kožarić’s longstanding recipe for transmitting a maximum visual and multi-layered artistic message. Since the reactions of passers-by form an integral part of Kožarić’s work, it remains to be seen how the people of Rijeka will accept this unusual guest.

Organiser: Museum of Modern and Contemporary Art (Rijeka), with the Kožarić family support
Partner: Čistoća Public Utility Company, Rijeka
Flagship: Times of Power