Art The revaluation of the feminine in Adelisa Selimbašić
Artart

The revaluation of the feminine in Adelisa Selimbašić

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Giorgia Massari
Adelisa Selimbašić
 | Collater.al

Rome, it is a warm December afternoon, on a semi-desolate street walks an eccentric-looking woman: her deep fuchsia hair flutters in the air and her bomber jacket of the same color almost blinds the eye. Her face is made up and her nails are long and fluorescent. The young artist Adelisa Selimbašić (1996) is captivated, chases after her and asks if she can take her picture. These are the people who inspire the art of the Italian-Bosnian artist, these are the protagonists of her oil-on-canvas works. Ordinary people, whom we can easily meet in our daily lives, perhaps our friends and relatives, colleagues or acquaintances, or why not, just us. What Adelisa seeks are the details that we try to hide and suppress through a looser sweater, a heavy layer of foundation or, even more, to erase and smooth out through filters or “miracle” apps. Similarly, the artist seeks out whimsical details, such as piercings, hair, and colorful nails, proudly displayed by the wearer, but often criticized, pointed at, and whispered about by the many judgmental voices, who pronounce themselves from above their ideal standard of composure.

Adelisa Selimbašić
 | Collater.al

Adelisa Selimbašić, through a colorful and ironic language, attempts to create a universe in which the sense of inadequacy, to which we are instead accustomed, has no place. The photographic cut chosen by the artist echoes the typical format of social platforms in which our ideals of beauty are created. The choice of perspective window creates a sense of familiarity that facilitates the approach to the works and figures represented, whose faces are often not visible. In this way, no specific identity is identified, but multiple subjectivities find space. The bodies are portrayed in a dreamlike dimension, as if they were nymphs, whose carefree attitude is enhanced by the vivid and ethereal colors.

Adelisa Selimbašić
 | Collater.al

The artist’s need to represent what are considered “diversities” and “ambiguities” stems from her personal history. Adelisa Selimbašić grows up in Bosnia, a country whose difficulties in accepting what goes outside the lines of traditionality she recounts. Where often even too much nail polish can cause a stir. Collater.al met with her to better understand how her research developed and what evolutions she undertook in her painting production.

Talking about the beginnings of her path, she herself tells us how her initial fear in expressing herself in total freedom is then overcome also thanks to her family, who understands her works and welcomes them with enthusiasm, showing her that the message she boldly decides to communicate to others is charged with a special strength. She herself tells us, “Their understanding motivated me, made me realize that the artist’s job is to enhance the sensitive perception of his/her surroundings, which we all have but which the artist has courage to show. Over the years I then realized that what I show in my works is not someone else but it is me, it is something that is inside me, which I choose to share, conveying courage and energy to others and, at the same time, the knowledge that I am not alone.

Adelisa Selimbašić
 | Collater.al

Her artistic production begins with small to medium canvases focused on women’s bodies and their details, while playing with scenes of everyday life that trigger in viewers a certain mischief. “In my life I have learned about the misogynistic and macho mindsets of our deeply patriarchal society, in fact, the next step was to take note of this knowledge and begin to make fun of the sexual associations that even the mind of the person who considers himself a puritan, has within it. I can depict with total innocence a girl eating ice cream, but I know for a fact that anyone will read it with malice, alluding to sexuality. This aspect amuses me and is intended to lead people to take notice, accept it and be able to laugh about it.”

Through her research and the various art residencies she undertakes, Adelisa develops a new awareness and intellectual growth that marks an evolution: it is no longer only the woman’s body that is represented but, rather, femininity in a broad sense. The painting itself also expands: the contour lines become lighter and lighter and the colors increasingly dissolute, achieving a kind of abstraction. About this, the artist explains, “I have come today to an abstraction of the creative process, in which I forget about the subject and focus more on the surface. For example, when I paint a thigh I no longer think about the thigh itself, but I interpret it as an element that inhabits a space, I focus on the skin in its totality. My paintings remain figurative but the process is approached abstractly. The body undergoes a decomposition, the contours are less and less heavy and everything becomes more relaxed.

The figure of Adelisa Selimbašić in the art scene takes on issues that need continuous dialogue, with a language that is not polemical, but, rather, that is conveyed through beauty and is contained in a protected dimension: the cultural one.

Courtesy by Adelisa Selimbašić and Ipercubo Gallery

Artart
Written by Giorgia Massari
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