"After recent visits to Bosnia, I have been thinking of villages as metaphors for the unstructured, impermanent, ever-changing, rhizome-like spaces in which hierarchy and dominance are questioned a space that spreads unpredictably, where no two objects exist parallel to one another. This idea of village corresponds to my thinking of drawing as an open-ended way of responding, both emotionally and intellectually, to my present environment as well as my memories. I record and diagram thoughts and observations in an attempt to understand the ubiquitous interweaving of past and present, memory and tangible reality."
Dragana Crnjak toys with viewers perceptions in wall drawings that somehow manage to create impossible illusions even as they seem only fleetingly present. Her fragmented images, drawn with charcoal directly on the wall, insist on the almost physical presence of the artists hand. She has surely and literally left her mark. Yet her images might well be in the process of arriving or leavingby teleporter, as fragmentary and unstable as they appear.
Crnjak, born in Bosnia, studied art in Sarajevo and Belgrade before moving to the United States in 1997. She received her BFA in Painting from Myers School of Art at The University of Akron, Ohio in 2002 and her MFA in Painting and Printmaking from Virginia Commonwealth University in Richmond, Virginia in 2004. She is a recipient of Ohio Arts Council Individual Excellence Award in visual art for 2008 and 2011 and of Virginia Museum of Fine Arts Professional Fellowship in drawing. She had taught art at University of Virginia and The Cleveland Institute of Art. She is currently Associate Professor at Youngstown State University, Ohio, teaching painting and drawing. Crnjak has shown solo and group exhibition throughout Ohio, Pennsylvania, Virginia and New York.