Rikardo Druškić is an intuitive artist whose detailed and colorful paintings are driven by love, fear, spirituality and empathy. Born in Zagreb in 1990, Rikardo lives in Sarajevo and exhibits internationally. He uses a combination of art techniques such as drawing, painting, street art and digital art.
On April 6th, Rikardo opens a new solo exhibition at Galeria Taller La Maldita Estampa in Barcelona. The exhibition explores the theme of artificial intelligence and its impact on our world. In anticipation for this show, we asked Rikardo to tell us a bit more about his creative process and his latest body of work.
How did you start making art?
In high school—as a boy afraid of the world—art gave me a sanctuary from a reality where I wasn’t accepted. In the beginning it was hard for me to understand what I was doing. As time passed, my perception and understanding of reality started to change. Now, I’m a man who knows about himself and his purpose. Art is a medium that I use to communicate with myself and then with my environment. This gives me the opportunity to enter non-material realms. There I find my truth, feed my soul and have my visions which I materialize through my creations. They let me feel the wholeness with my inner being.
Your artwork has traveled all over the world, from New York to Taiwan. What’s the best part about showing internationally? Do different audiences react distinctly to your art?
As an artist, I feel grateful and humbled that my artwork has been able to travel to different parts of the world and reach a diverse range of audiences. It’s been an enriching experience to witness how people from different cultures and backgrounds react to my work. I believe that this reflects my personal journey of self-discovery and growth as an artist, as my artwork resonates with individuals beyond my immediate environment.
Showcasing my artwork internationally is a reflection of my journey towards individuation. It represents my attempt to transcend personal and cultural boundaries, connect with the collective unconscious and engage with universal symbols that can be recognized and understood by people from different parts of the world.
I have found that different audiences do react distinctly to my art. This, to me, indicates that my work taps into universal themes and archetypal symbols that are rooted in the collective unconscious. Observing these diverse reactions helps me better understand the impact of my artwork and its ability to communicate beyond language and cultural barriers.
Your paintings are incredibly detailed. Can you walk us through your creative process? Do you sketch first or go directly to paint on canvas? How long does it take you to complete a painting?
I strive to create detailed and intricate paintings that invite the viewer to delve into meaning and symbolism that are woven throughout each piece. My creative process typically begins with a period of introspection, where I reflect on my own experiences, thoughts, and emotions. I find that this deep-dive into my subconscious allows me to access universal themes and archetypes that can be expressed through my art.
Once I have a concept in mind, I often start by creating digital sketches using Photoshop. This allows me to experiment with different compositions and color palettes before committing to a canvas. Once I have a strong sense of what I want to create, I move onto the canvas and begin layering acrylic paint. My process is highly detailed, and I often work on multiple layers, adding depth and texture to the piece.
The amount of time it takes me to complete a painting can vary, but generally, it takes between one and two months. During this time, I continue to reflect on the concept and meaning behind the piece, allowing it to evolve and take on a life of its own. Ultimately, my creative process is a reflection of my journey of self-discovery, as I delve into my subconscious and tap into universal themes that resonate with both myself and the viewer.
How do you choose your themes? What are your paintings aiming to portray to your viewers?
Themes I choose to explore in my paintings are often influenced by my personal experiences, cultural and societal issues, and universal themes. I believe that my artistic expression is a reflection of my journey towards self-discovery and individuation, as I seek to understand the complexities of the world and my place within it.
Through my art, I aim to convey universal themes and archetypes that can be recognized by people from diverse backgrounds. As Jung believed, art has the power to tap into the collective unconscious and communicate beyond language and cultural barriers, and I strive to utilize this power to invite viewers to engage with the world in a deeper and more meaningful way.
Whether I am exploring themes of artificial intelligence, mythology, connection, or transformation, my paintings are aimed at encouraging viewers to reflect on their own experiences and perspectives and to find their own meaning within the complexities of the world. In this way, I believe that my art serves as a tool for personal and collective growth, as it invites viewers to delve deeper into their own psyches and engage with the universal themes and symbols that exist within us all.
Do your creative process and choice of theme change when you’re making a mural in a public space when compared to a painting in the privacy of your studio?
As an introverted person, my creative process and choice of theme can differ when creating a mural in a public space compared to a painting in the privacy of my studio. When creating a mural, I must take into account the physical space and the audience who will be viewing the artwork. This can require a shift in perspective and a more collaborative approach, as I must work with others to ensure that the mural fits the context of the space and engages with the community in a meaningful way.
From a psychological perspective, the act of creating a mural in a public space can also bring up feelings of vulnerability and anxiety. The process of creating art is often a private and personal experience that allows me to explore my own thoughts and emotions. When creating a mural in a public space, I must confront my own insecurities and fears about being seen and judged by others.
However, from a philosophical perspective, I believe that art has the power to connect us and create meaning in our lives. When creating a mural in a public space, I have the opportunity to engage with a larger community and to create an artwork that has the potential to inspire and bring joy to others. By stepping outside of my comfort zone and creating art in a public space, I am able to connect with others in a deeper and more meaningful way, and to contribute to the collective consciousness through my art. Ultimately, the act of creating art, whether in a private studio or in a public space, is a reflection of my own journey towards self-discovery and my desire to connect with others and contribute to the world in a positive way.
Your upcoming exhibition in Barcelona will include 30 paintings from your latest creation phase on the theme of artificial intelligence. Can you tell us how/why AI has inspired you and what you want viewers to take away from this exhibition?
The theme of artificial intelligence has been a source of inspiration for me because of its potential to transform our world in profound ways. As we continue to advance technologically, AI is becoming more integrated into our daily lives, raising important questions about what it means to be human and how we relate to technology.
Through my paintings in this exhibition, I aim to explore these complex themes and to invite viewers to consider their own relationship to technology and its impact on our society. Each painting in the collection is a reflection of my own exploration of the intersection between human consciousness and artificial intelligence, and the ways in which technology is changing our perceptions of ourselves and the world around us.
Ultimately, I hope that viewers will come away from this exhibition with a deeper understanding of the complex and multifaceted nature of AI and its implications for our society. By engaging with these themes through art, I believe that we can create a space for reflection and dialogue about the role of technology in our lives and the importance of maintaining a human connection in an increasingly automated world.