Left Field

By David Wilson

A memoir from the co-founder of the charity War Child

Monday, 28 September 2015

Half the world is missing

Left Field' is a memoir with many meadows, one of them containing the flowers and fields of the Croatian naïve painter Ivan Rabuzin. Some years ago, as his London agent, I produced a BBC Arena film made during the wars in the former Yugoslavia. With Rabuzin's paintings came a homespun philosophy: ‘When a man looks at something, he just sees half of it. At every moment, half the world is missing to us so we must turn in order to see the second half. Everything depends on what we see and how long we see it. That’s how long we live. Unfortunately, for most of us, even when we are alive, we live only half a life.’ Despite selling truckloads of his silk-screen prints in Japan and with buyers like Woody Allen, it proved impossible to popularise his work in the UK. Croatia: The Artists' War was panned by the critics here. Giles Smith in The Independent said, ‘Most of his paintings look like the kind of Get Well card you might buy for someone you didn’t know that closely.’ Check Rabuzin's art out for yourself here. He liked to play Chopin when he worked though this video is set to Handel.

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