Petra Varl is one of the most recognizable contemporary artists in Slovenia. She has devoted herself to various techniques in her work (drawing, graphics, painting, illustration and installation) but drawing remains her primary means of expression, which she also teaches as a professor at the Faculty of Education of the University of Maribor. Her distinctive drawings, which address the viewer in a subtle yet direct way, mostly depict motifs of everyday life and interpersonal relations.
In 2012, when Maribor hosted the European City of Culture, Petra Varl placed 30 signs on the theme Hugs and kisses throughout the city. The artist wanted to encourage people to spontaneous displays of love and affection through signs that usually forbid or command. The signs were later removed but the monumental image of Kiss on the wall of the parking lot of the Faculty of Law remained. In her design, Petra Varl stayed true to refined lines and simple figural representation. The protagonists are a man and a woman, captured kissing “mouth to mouth”. The work is cleansed of excessive elements; it therefore appears universal and light, subtly entering into communication with its surroundings.
(Ana Kristofič, in the framework of the Creative Path to Knowledge project, Virtual guide; The investment is co-financed by the Republic of Slovenia and the European Union from the European Social Fund)