Saba Skaberne

Saba Skaberne

Ljubljana, Ljubljana, Slovenia

About Saba Skaberne

I'm interested in many things and I'm on the constant search of new ways to share my thoughts in the visual language, but also stories, universal human issues, issues concerning women and many more…. Therefore I'm also changing materials and forms in order to express this things!
I think I don't have a particular style, because everything is subordinated. to the subject I'm interested in. I tend to shell the majority of »feeling« from the material itself. I use a huge range of materials:from classic sculpting materials (predominately clay, stone, glass bronze) to more contemporary ones, like plastic, fibre, felt, found objects, liquid….. to non-material mediums ( video., sound or animation).
If I feel vulnerable I might choose felt to work with ( for "protection"), next time,if I feel like »falling to pieces«, I might decide to make sculptures made of multiple pieces that need to be assembled, or when I'm happy and content, I choose clay or metal, to show how strong I'm feeling…. So, there's clearly lndirect physical evidence of my mood/state on material itself!!

I'd divide my work on two main complexes: The intimate (smallish) one and the public / large one. In the past I was interested in figure but also the fragments of the human body like hands, legs, bellybuttons, ears….although I don't work very much on figure nowadays I still return back to it now and then, because it's somehow the eternal source…. as it's for material:clay!
I'm particularly interested in space, so I often work on site-specific installations. I love to work in remote places somewhere in the nature. For me it's more important the place , where I work, then how many people will actually see this work at the end…. That counts predominately for the public concept.
When I work In small scale , the surrounding space is less important – although,it's never totally excluded- there I put a lot of emphasis on detail. I deal a lot with symbols and surrealistic visual language sometimes my art is very minimal, but sometimes rich in form and colour…There was time when I was quite influenced by Magritte, but also Cubism( after my travel to Africa in eighties) and Brancusi. In time of study also new English sculpture had huge influence on me , like Deacon, Kapoor, Woodrow, Caro , Cragg and many others from that generation!
My art usually refers to ( personal) past events or premonition of the future or has critical, even sarcastic note to the modern society. Often the titles are some sort of (absurd)word –games.
I love to make art that has more layers for its understanding .And I don't believe in feminine and masculine art- there's only one Art : good or bad one!!

My recently most favourite material has been felt; better said: making felt by myself and researching felt as sculptural material , and not only as decorative one which is often the case. I hope, I think, I'm on a good path!
Felting, as technique is a very physical and patience demanding work and because I work on density and layers ,works are mainly small sized! It requires a long and complicated procedure to attain the desired structure and appearance. Central to the series I'm working recently are »cores« in the roles of carriers and bases for images.or structures embedded and stretched across various sculptural elements. They are what combines energy and potency of image and basis of the narrative images on the symbolic level.
With one word: my greatest teachers are nature and humans!


Saba Skaberne was born in 1962 in Ljubljana, Slovenia in an artistic family- her mother Sonja Tavcar- Skaberne is also a sculptor.Between 1981 and 1986 she studied sculpture at Ljubljana Art Academy where she graduated in 1987in professor Slavko Tihec's class.In the same year she went on an individual, five-month study travel to West Africa.From 1994 – 2001 she was a member of informal group of Slovenian sculptors called Water & Sculptures. From early nineties she worked on site-specific projects at home and abroad but in all this time she never stopped making sculptures in terracotta as her favourite material .She specialised in miniatures in terracotta but also portraiture. As a freelance artist she also works in different artistic areas(stop-motion animation and video). Since 2007 she introduced handmade felted sculptures (»soft sculpture«) in her art practice and tries to promote felt as an equal sculpting material as all the others. IT is typical for Saba that she works in many different materials, depending on feeling , »story« or properties/history of materials themselves…
In the early days she was very influenced by African art, but later also by »new« British sculptors like : R. Deacon,T.Cragg,A.Caro, A.Kappor, Goldsworthy…. but also artists like Eva Hesse, Sol LeWitt, J. Beuse etc...
From 1999-2012 she was teaching sculpture at Famul Stuart School of Applied Arts in Ljubljana, now she runs art workshops and periodically works as restorer of ceramic and pottery for Ljubljana Municipal Museum Recently she has taken a partial job as a prosthetics maker at the Ljubljana Institute for Rehabilitation.
Until now she had over 40 solo exhibitions at home and abroad. She also took part in more than 45 group exhibitions, colonies and projects. She received five awards for her works which are in many private collections. She is an author of a public art work in Maribor(Slovenia) that combines architecture, design and poetry.Skaberne is a member of Slovenian and Ljubljana Association of Fine Arts Societies ( since 1987 ) and Slovenian Designers Association since 2010.
Between 2003 and 2008 she lived and worked in Perth, Western Australia. In 2008 she returned to Slovenia where she's now living and working as a free-lance artist.



1989 ...........jury award for sculpture at 8. Dubrovacki Salon, Dubrovnik Modern Gallery, Dubrovnik, CRO
2000 ...........the Ljubljana major's first prize award at Erotics and Infinity of the Body exhibition, Town hall, Ljubljana, SLO
2002 ...........the Ljubljana major's second prize award at The Pleasure in Sculpture exhibition,Town hall,
Ljubljana, SLO
2004 ...........jury award for sculpture at POP 04, Majski Salon, exhibition of members of Slovenian Fine Artists Association,Rihard Jakopič Gallery, Ljubljana
2014……… DOS ( Slovenian designers association) second prize for good design award-spring 2013 for ZIDNICE-Permanent wall-installation around the TcheligiTower in Maribor ( executed for European Capitol of Culture Maribor 2012


Selected solo exhibitions since 1996-2021:
2021-FLUID /INFINITY, felt objects, INSULA gallery, IZOLA,SLO
2017 - INTERMEDIATE TIME, felt works 2010-2014, House of Culture, Pivka, SLO
2016 - ZBIRADEJNICA 2016 /IDEACOLLECTOR 2016,( ongoing project) Breg Gallery, Ljubljana, SLO
2015 - SCULPTURAL COCKTAIL, Breg gallery, Ljubljana, SLO
2015. - 2 VIEWS, Ivan Cankar House of Culture and town Library, Vrhnika, SLO
2015 - THE LANGUAGE OF HANDS, Logatec library, Logatec, SLO
2012 - ZIDNICE( the wall-like structure), site-specific, long-term installation, Tscheligi medieval tower, Maribor European Capitol of Culture 2012, SLO
2012 - .IDEACOLLECTOR FOR MARIBOR, mailbox- site- specific installation in inner court of 33 Gregorčičeva street, Maribor, for the Maribor European Capitol of Culture 2012, SLO
2011 - CONVERSATION WITH THE ANCESTORS, multimedial project, Simulaker Gallery, Novo Mesto, SLO
2010 -11 - EXPLORING OF TIME, auido-video-spatial installation, Municipal Gallery, Kranj( wih A.s.G.)
2010 - EXPLORING OF TIME , spatial-audio-video installation, Pentagonal tower at Ljubljana Castle, SLO (with A.S. Gruden)
2009 - TWO WAY, installation, ZDSLU garden, Ljubljana (with A.S. Gruden)
2008 - FLAWED GEMS - INTIMATE PORTRAITS , Galerija likovnih umjetnosti Osijek,Osijek, CRO
2007 - LAYLI & SABA, sculptures and prints, Kidogo Arthouse gallery, Fremantle, Western Australia
2007 - INTIMATE PORTRAITS 2007, Hest Gallery, Ljubljana, SLO and web-site of Hidden Museum, Austria –
2006 - BLEEDING HEART, installation, Freerange Gallery, Subiaco/Perth, Western Australia
2006 - FLAWED GEMS - INTIMATE PORTRAITS 2003-2005,Fremantle Arts Centre, Fremantle,
Western Australia
2003 - Sculptures, Žula Gallery, Ljubljana, SLO
2001 - SMALL IS BEAUTIFUL, sculptures1989-2001, Latobia Gallery, Ljubljana,SLO
2000 - LANDschaft/LEIDENschaft, solo project within the international project
KUNST.LANDSCHAFT at Hidden museum,Vorarlberg, Austria,
1999 - KONTRADA 1999, artist's exhibition on the third international music festival in Gothic House, Kanal ob Soči, SLO
1998 - EVERGREEN/ Autumn, installations in the garden of ZDSLU, Ljubljana, SLO exhibition from the cycle Four seasons
1998 - Commerce Gallery, Ljubljana , SLO – (with an Austrian photographer Dr.M.Strehblow )
1998 - CELJE '98, Celjski likovni salon , Celje,SLO - (with D. Rozman)
1997 - Ivan Grohar Gallery, Škofja Loka, SLO - works on water & sculptures subject, with Rozman
1997Beneška Galerija/Galeria di Veneto, Špeter/ST.Pietro al Natisone, Italy - Art geomantie cycle, installations (with D.Rozman and T.Celestina)
1996 - Novi Rotovž Gallery , Maribor , SLO - sculptures and installations (with D. Rozman)

group exhibitions from 2016-2021:
2021 - V ODBOJU SVETLOBE/ IN THE REFLECTION OF LIGHT,baroque mansion Novo Celje /Žalec, SLO(exhibition of 6 artists: 2 photograprehrs, 2 sculptors and 2 painters ) form May - October 2021
2018- AUSSTELLUNG- recent felt sculptures, Galerie Kunstnetz Wien, Viena, Austria
2018 - MARAVEE MIND-skrb / la cura / care, selected exhibition, part of the art festival MARAVEE( IT), Loža gallery, Koper, SLO ( selected exhib. )
2017- SYMBOL, SIGN, COLOUR, 6th international FINE ARTS FESTIVAL KRANJ-ZDSLU 2017, Town hall, Kranj, SLO ( selected exhib.)
2017 - ARTIST'S SKETCHES,"S" gallery, Ljubljana castle, Ljubljana, SLO (selected exhib.)
2016 - MELANGE EXPANDED, international travelling exhibition: Anker Brotfabrik exhib. space, Wienna (A) and Ljubljana Castle -Kazemate, Ljubljana (SLO)
2016 - CREATURES IN RECENT SLOVENIAN SCULPTURE, travellin exhibition: Maribor art gallery, Jože Spacal Gallery (Štanjel), Gorenjska museum, Kranj, all in Slovenia
2015-2016 - VIEWS ON SLOVENIAN SCULPTURE 1975-2015, (artist selection by Slovenian Art Critic Association, Velenje gallery, Velenje and Piran Municipal Gallery, Piran/SLO
2015-2016 - RDEČA NIT/IL FILO ROSSO/ RED THREAD,, Karas Gallery, Zagreb (CRO)