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 Vera Rankovic  (1948 - )

About: Vera Rankovic


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Lived/Active: Massachusetts / Serbia/Former Yugoslavia      Known for: ceramics, mosaics, painting and sculpture

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This biography from the Archives of AskART:
The following was submitted by the artist, November 2010:

I was trained as an artist, primarily as a painter, but currently I mostly work in ceramics and mosaics as well as painting.  I create unique pieces of stoneware, ceramics, candelabra, reliquaries, small wall panels with much texture and of subtle natural color. I also make functional ceramics mostly bowls, vessels and mugs.

My paintings are oil on canvas, acrylic and mixed media on paper. The subject matter is usually abstract, although there are some figurative themes and landscape. The mosaics are made of cracked end polished tiles, and my own ceramic tiles. The mosaics can be mounted on walls as murals, or can be part of garden furniture such as tables and chairs  and combined with wrought iron, vessels and other garden objects.  Also I make table tops for interior use, impervious to weather conditions.

I have a BFA degree as a painting major from Boston Museum School of Fine Art, an affiliate of Tufts University in Medford, Massachusetts.   I have taken part in many collective juried exhibitions and have received several prizes for ceramics sculpture.  I have also had many independent juried exhibitions.

I was born and attended elementary school in Belgrade (former Yugoslavia) and Arlington High School in Arlington, Massachusetts.  Currently I live and work in Belgrade, Serbia.

Artist Statement:

"I take art very seriously. When I was young, it was just too difficult to deal with. For some people art is easy, a pastime that relaxes them; for me it was hard.  I was too strict with myself, expecting too much, a masterpiece every time.  Of course, that was impossible, and I would sometimes get physically ill, nauseous, from the frustration and disappointment.  So I just stopped working in art, and went into a totally different profession, one that many consider hard, but for me it was much easier then art - journalism.  It was challenging, creative, and I was always learning something new.  After becoming a news editor, I eventually ended up as a correspondent with the Hague Tribunal, reporting of the war crimes in ex-Yugoslavia.  But I never gave up on art entirely, it was always there and waiting to be picked up and continued.

After a successful career, where I earned something of a name for myself, I decided to change my life entirely: went into early retirement, remarried, withdrew from public life, and gave up my apartment in the city for a country estate.  Yes, and I returned to art.  For me, art is something spontaneous, a delving into my deeper, subconscious self.  Now, I am strong and mature enough to be able to deal with it, and with success and satisfaction - usually.

My paintings are large, done quickly, and several at the time.  I do them in stages, returning to them later and looking at them with new eyes.  I love vibrant and opposite colors and the way they change and affect each other when you combine them.  I love experimenting in new and different media and techniques.  I love doing things that no one has done before.  I love texture.  I have developed some new techniques in mosaic and ceramics and have lately been making sculpture combining all three: ceramic pieces, mosaic and painting.  This is an effort to take the best qualities of all three art forms: shape, texture, and color and make them into a new, aesthetically and intellectually pleasing whole.

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