The latest series of paintings and drawings PERIPHERIES continues to reflect Dragana Crnjak’s ongoing interest in perception. Specifically, Crnjak was driven by peripheral visions in this body of work, the loose perceptions of the fleeting moments that leave undefined impressions – formations allusive enough to trigger curiosity and suggest potential new structures. While driven by dichotomies between the physical and impalpable, she has become more interested in the proximities between the shapes and suggested formations, the tensions and softness of the negative spaces.
Crnjak thinks of mark-making in paintings and drawings as tracing fragmented architectural and natural landscapes to suggests spaces in flux – still being shaped, built or erased. Her fascination with geometry and patterns is inspired by ethnic Serbian embroideries, urban design and architecture, as well as patterns found in nature. While embracing repetition and order, Crnjak is restlessly interrupting the same – seeking her place at peripheries of spaces.
Crnjak is a Serbian-American artist born in former Yugoslavia. She received her MFA in Painting and Printmaking from Virginia Commonwealth University, and her BA in the same concentration from the Myers School of Art at the University of Akron, OH. She is a recipient of Ohio Arts Council Individual Excellence Awards in visual art for 2008, 2011, 2015, Research Professorship from Youngstown State University, and Virginia Museum of Fine Arts Professional Fellowship in drawing. She previoudly taught art at The University of Virginia and The Cleveland Institute of Art. She is currently Associate Professor at Youngstown State University, Ohio, teaching painting and drawing.