Exercises for the Past
acrylic, canvas 200x290cm 2020
Jaan Toomik`s work "Exercises for the Past'' stems from a metaphysical and shamanist outlook on the world and focuses the viewer's gaze from this phenomenological position on the eternal content of existence: life and death, religion and spirituality, all that ties the human body to the cyclical processes in nature. (1)
What could be the truth, and how is existence related to truth or is the objective verity as such beyond any human control or reach? Toomik's magnetically green work could belong to the category of new types of altar paintings. In the context of the era when human culture creates substitutions for everything natural, the author still sees the man as a central and determining actor, i.e. a (sacred and natural) subject of destiny. Toomik creates an algorithm, the fatally moralizing aura of which is clearly perceptible through the focal point of placing a small human figure in the middle of the picture but who still cannot be taken as the only subject in the painting. The vertical of the work is filled from edge to edge with a living existence and charged with unknownness to the man. Toomik portrays a person putting him into nature like an eternal student on the verge of discovering the infinity and endless mysteries of being alive.