Arijel Štrukelj: “Soul makes us unique, soul is the beauty of life...”
Arijel Štrukelj thinks that the soul is the pillar - the column of our life. The Spirit is represented as the main pillar of his sculptures.
Interview by Ummuhan Kazanc
Dear Arijel Štrukelj, thank you very much for accepting our interview request. Can you introduce yourself and how did you decide to work in the art of sculpture?
I was born in Šempeter pri Gorici-Slowenien (14.4.1987). Already as a child I was interested to express my creativity and so I joined my mother at her ceramic classes. I always liked to work with materials and many years I worked in the profession as a restorator to restore historic buildings. I started to work serious as a sculptor in 2012. Since then I took part at 28 Sculpture Symposium in fourteen countries, on four continents.
You say "For me, art is a universal language for connecting people and giving form to emotions." What does art mean to you?
Art is for me a natural part of my life. Art is for me an outlet to express my creativity and emotions.
Where do you get inspiration for your sculptures?
For me, nature is an inexhaustible source of inspiration. In search of your laws and rhythms, my perception of space and time becomes more sensitive and focused
You have many sculptures in public space. Is there a reason for this choice?
By placing my sculptures in public spaces, I want to bring my artistic work closer to people, especially those who do not visit galleries and museums. My works live with the community, show themselves as natural phenomena in human intervention and thus largely fulfill their purpose.
You mostly work with stone and bronze, don’t you?
I work with stone, wood, metal, bronze and multimedia.
Let’s talk about your sculptures. How the “Soul Impact” series was born. They are really impressive piece of art.
In many religious, philosophical and mythological traditions, there is a belief in the incorporeal essence of a living being called the soul. Soul is the column - pillar of our life. Our souls are fragile and powerful in same time, so they deserve a lot of care which we usually forget about. The soul is represented as the main column - pillar of my sculpture. Every soul gets in the life time from all different sides and reasons a lot of impacts. In the past people lived their lives pure and for a higher reason and a big impact on our soul was nature. Now in this times that we live working to survive we forget about our nature roots and history which are the foundations of humanity. The impacts on our souls are still happening from our everyday tensions of life. The way how impacts change our lives is effected to our behavior when they happen. The impacts are represented as stretched openings going both ways in my sculpture and showing our naked souls. You know when this impact happens because it opens up a part of your soul which you have long forgotten or never experienced before. When we work outside we are connected with our feelings and the nature. In this way it wakes up our roots that are integrated deep inside of our souls so we should never forget about ourselves. From the events of the past we should learn how to not make the same mistakes again and rise to build our future smarter and stronger than ever before.
Soul makes us unique, soul is the beauty of life...
What can you tell about your series of sculptures called “Digital Tension”?
During the first Corona-Lockdown, when it was not possible to go to my studio and work physically I bought myself a tablet and started to draw every day. The last years our lives are more and more confronted with the virtual reality. The Tensions that are created through the digital world are strongly influencing and shaping our lives.
Now more than ever we are impacted by digital tensions provided by media and other channels that are a part of our everyday life. Directly or indirectly infiltrating our subconscious they have a big impact on shaping our life path for the future. The tensions created are confusing and defocusing our values of life itself blocking our view on the things that are really important witch are getting more and more lost deep in our souls.
You are attending important sculpture symposiums and exhibitions all around World and you have many awards. How these symposiums and exhibitions effect your art?
Influences from different cultures and people from around the world are a great learning experiences. Adopting to working in different countries and conditions are always a factor that you adopt in to the work that you are doing. Technical knowledge of working on relative short time frame and pushing out a monumental sculpture is really a mind game filled with emotions and excitement.
Lastly, what is your future plans?
Keep on doing what I love and time will tell.