MASTERPIECES

March 11, 2019 | Ana Simona

MASTERPIECES


In U10, a contemporary art gallery in the center of Belgrade, from the 28th of February till the 16th of March, the audience can see the artworks of the master students of the Painting department of the Faculty of Fine Arts in Belgrade. The pieces are selected by the U10 Art Collective consisting of the artists and art historians.

After a brief and insightful visit to the faculty, the collective has invited seventeen young artists to show their works within the exhibition setting made through collaboration and free communication with the members of the collective. The goal of the exhibition is, in accordance with the fundamental idea of U10 Art Space, to present and promote the young art scene and to give the opportunity to the artists of the youngest generation to gain experience in exhibition setting and organizing, and communicating with the public and professionals, as well as to get to know and present themselves to the local scene.

Artists: Nebojša Adamović, Dunja Ćorlomanović, Nikola Dimitrović, Katarina Đorđević, Kosta Đorđević, Nina Jeftić, Una Knežević, Jasna Konstantin, Ivana Kucina, Jovana Kulezić, Andrea Moračanin, Dunja Ožegović, Aleksandar Rakezić, Tomica Radulović, Vukašin Raduški, Anja Tončić, Katarina Vijatov

Nebojša Adamović

In his artwork, Nebojsa Adamovic is playing with meanings and representation as such. He is questioning the usage of different media in creating artwork and how those various techniques affect ways of representation and shape our ways of seeing. Adamovic creates confusion in the viewer by showing the only partial image, which then calls the one who’s watching to recreate the whole in her/his head. This omission of the whole and creating confusion on purpose may also implicate tendencies towards surrealist scenery.



Dunja Ćorlomanović

The series of eight drawings by Dunja Ćorlomanović is particularly interesting to me because it expresses deep religious or spiritual feelings - not that often present in the art of young contemporary artists in Serbia. The drawings are subtle and soft, made with delicate lines so they instantly create the feeling of tenderness. The text on the drawings, written in the manner of confession, affects the viewer with its honesty - in example when the one reads “I am not finding you, Lord” on the white paper with just a couple of tiny lines drawn next to the text, one is immediately feeling compassion with the artist’s sadness, despair or fears. It has a strong message in the times of alienation from the spiritual where prayer and confession don’t play a big role in the life of young people.

Nikola Dimitrović

The art piece by Nikola Dimitrović Trag ogoljenog (The trace of the naked one) made in mixed media is also a type of confession. The illuminated black Cyrillic letters fixed on the wall say “I am guilty“. This statement put on the empty wall with just one small almost abstract object fixed below the letters indicates the awareness of the consequences of one’s own wrong deeds. It seems to me like the prevailing feelings are loneliness and redemption. Everyone looking instantly comes up with that one person who did them wrong or to whom he-she did wrong, and the artwork leaves them standing like that in the gallery thinking about that person or event for a while.

Katarina Đorđević

Katarina Đorđević’s artwork Memento mori is a hanging installation, rectangular in shape, consisting of canvas covered in soil. The title itself is explaining the artwork - remembering death as it is omnipresent and guaranteed. The piece is somehow meditative, but also very dark, it’s reminding the spectator of peacefulness and stillness death brings. Formally, it’s following the tradition of land art and arte povera, which put in the contexts of the 21st century might indicate the absurdity of fast life, everyday anxieties, worries and remind us really that death is coming sooner or later, so we better stop and contemplate about the value of material things and inevitable mortality of ourselves. 

 

Kosta Đorđević

In the traditional technique of lithography, Kosta Đorđević is presenting a half-abstract, stone-like object. He uses the neutral form of the object to experiment with possibilities of expression in this technique, widely used in the 20th century by many painters precisely because of its painterly qualities. Kosta Đorđević mainly inquires relations between light and shadow, and especially the way they construct solid form in perspective. Also, by the moves, lines and the use of shades, it can be seen that he is mainly (and well) educated in painting and not the printmaking. 


 

Nina Jeftić

In her drawing Nina Jeftić is examining the possible ways to reinterpret motives from traditional sculpture, be it ancient Hellenistic Nika, or a totemic head. Bodies are stylized so the drawing resembles a cartoon-like sketch. The main character is always a woman, so the artist may want to question and reinterpret the legacy of ancient art in representing female bodies and women as subjects. 


 

Una Knežević

The painting of Una Knežević is apparently a family portrait made after a photograph. Different painting traditions pop to one's mind when looking at it - fauvistic use of color mixed with expressionism in contrasts and faces, Manet’s use of white and its different tones in high contrast to dark colors of clothes, and also influence of modernist painting of Yugoslav artists from the 20th century. Sad and nostalgic, this portrait reminds us of the long lost habit of having family portraits but also taking photos of the family in this representative manner. 

 

Jasna Konstantin

On the untitled artwork of Jasna Konstantin, we can see the artists fascination with the landscape. One of the oldest topics in the painting, but that never stopped being interpreted all over again. In quite an impressionist manner, she is trying to explore the expressive possibilities of painting nature and its phenomena, slipping occasionally into abstraction. 

 

Ivana Kucina

In the animation Preobražaj (Metamorphosis) Ivana Kucina is interested in questioning identity, and its mutability. She is trying to interrogate the fluidity of identity and directions of its possible change. I think the outcome of her visual research is the conclusion that identities are not fixed, that form, biology or material existence don’t presuppose fixed positions from which one observes, feels and thinks. 

 

Jovana Kulezić

The sketchbook of Jovana Kulezić is full of her colored drawings so well drawn in small details and colored in vivid, resonant colors. Her drawings are usually quite morbid regarding the topic - cut fingers and blood on the ax, grotesque faces, a dog that bites a feeding hand, but still, they have some witty even funny tone. The represented actions, scenarios or beings are often surrealistic but drawn in a realistic, yet stylized manner so they resemble some illustrations of fairytales, but obscure ones.

 

Andrea Moračanin

Andrea Moračanin is presented by her three artworks painted with the dry and oil pastel on paper. She is painting interiors but focusing on the exploration of the relationship between space and form. In her monochromatic pieces color serves to communicate the atmosphere and the vibe of space, not to depict it realistically. The omission of people and details also create a feeling of loneliness and alienation. 


 

Dunja Ožegović

Portraits made by Dunja Ožegović are sarcastic depictions of people that represent some social stereotypes. In the time of constant use of filters that highly beautify ones face, characteristic features of ones face become something to hide. The artist tries to go back to some form of caricature to mock this practice but also to try to relate once again the physical with the psychological. 


 

Aleksandar Rakezić

Aleksandar Rakezić created an interesting piece - hyperrealistic box of herbal sage tea (Salvia officinalis). His artwork relies on the traditions of American pop art - especially Warhol’s Cambell Soup cans. Here, he might as well allude on the pharmaceutical mafia and the way it creates real social problems for offering „fake” medicine for the sake of capital. 

 

Tomica Radulović

It seems that the painting of Tomica Radulović comes from the same „school” as one of Una Knezevic. Artistic tradition of Manet’s impressionism and modernist Yugoslav painting is obvious. But the presented theme is rather curious - a woman is looking at her at her own reflection in the water, but we only get to see the eyes in the water. The woman looking down seems like a completely different person from the one in the reflection which may pose the questions of self-awareness and self-representation. 

 

Vukašin Raduški

In a series of works done by Vukašin Raduški feelings of absence and presence are constantly interwind. Trees and plants may or may not be alive, people are not present, space is quite empty, and there are only traces of what used to be somebody’s life once - a suitcase or a piece of clothing. His artworks are melancholic, soft and in a way very silent. 



Anja Tončić

Ana Tončić is exploring the expressive qualities of the line as a painterly element. Her drawings are focused on how to represent speed, moving, or rapid change. Is the line able to express those abstract concepts with material consequences? Futurists would say yes, and so would Ana Tončić.

 

Katarina Vijatov

The paintings of Katarina Vijatov are rare examples of some kind of abstract expressionism tendencies in the contemporary Serbian painting. Her black abstract (non)forms on white background doubtlessly remind us of American painter Franz Kline and his expressive blacks on white. But the artist here uses more soft, more subtle forms that would place her art rather in lyrical abstraction than expressionist one.



* The exhibition shows that there are no strictly defined tendencies in contemporary Serbian painting. Painting became, even inside of the Academia, an open space for visual research in various media and genres. Young artists that exhibited their artworks in U10 cleary don’t have a common denominator in their artworks - they use different techniques, styles, and materials, they have a fundamentally different understanding of painting, rely on different traditions and they all speak about different subjects. This only means that the painting as a medium is still alive and it’s constantly being redefined by new generations of painters.

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