IDENTITY Cultural heritage

Conservative art as a treasure of cultural heritage

Mustač has remained conservative and consistent in his motifs, beliefs and worldviews throughout his creative life. In this way, he resists the whole direction of modern art that dominates the cultural scene of the 21st century. Although inadvertently, it is a rather brave and rebellious act. In times when art transcends its existence and the meaning of all that has been created throughout human history, Mustač holds his own artistic opus in this “can” on his own way. Thus, he prevents any influence of the outside world on what comes from his memories. He struggles to keep it to himself, by “writing” on the canvas everything that has been reflected out of his eye over 60 years. The colour that renders the grey and gloomy atmosphere of the winter landscape of the poor village in Međimurje in atypical orange and purple colours is also specific. These colours enhance the dynamic of a slow life of that time in the scenes of carriage that slowly passes returning from the field. Therewith he subtly signifies the joy that comes from that difficult but carefree time, which Mustač will not be able to get rid of for the rest of his life. It is engraved in the deepest pores of his soul.

Through his paintings, Mustač creates an almost cinematic experience of the former life in Međimurje out of his motifs, scenes, characters, actions and scripts. Those who have lived in those times will remember their childhood with a smile on their faces, while the younger generations will be able to gain insight into the times that are far behind them. This is the greatest value of his paintings, because they are not only artworks, but also a kind of documentary, historical document. Thus, Mustač creates a separate, original identity of the cultural property of this region. The rarity of the photographic camera in these areas at that time and the widespread poverty and isolation from the world's revolutionary discoveries made it impossible to create a rich photographic record of the time. Another interesting situation arises from this fact: Mustač does not replicate what we see today – he has left it to todays used up photographic media – he creates a new world on the construction of his surviving memories. This is his personal visual quote, his personal outline of a character who resided in this world. However, his outline is a very strong identifier of those who shared with him that period. It is a huge contribution, not only to the local area from which he originated, but also to the whole world.

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