Drawing Art Gallery CHAOS

Milan Stasevic was born in Vojvoda Stepa, Banat in 1946.
He graduated in painting from the Faculty of Fine Arts in Belgrade in 1975, Class of Prof Zoran Petrovic and completed his postgraduate studies of painting at the same faculty in 1977, Class of Prof Mladen Srbinovic.
He has been a member of ULUS since 1977 and a member of Graphic Group since 1978.
He has so far organized more than 50 solo shows both in the country and abroad, the most impressive being the following ones: “Noah’s Ark” paintings, ULUS Gallery, Belgrade, 1990, “The Contemporary Worlds” paintings, Cvijeta Zuzoric Pavilion, Belgrade, 1995, “De-sedimentation” paintings, Cultural Center Gallery, Belgrade, 2000 and “Back to the Beginning” paintings, ULUS Gallery, Belgrade, 2004. He also took part in more than 300 group shows home and abroad, the most important being “Joan Mirò” exhibition of original drawings, Barcelona, 1978, the International Graphics Biennial, Ljubljana, 1984, 1986, 1988 and 1990, the International Graphics Biennial, Varna, 1993, Modern Serbian Painting MSU Belgrade, Skoplje, 1998, October Salon, Belgrade, 1977-2000 and “An Age of Graphics”, SANU Gallery, Belgrade, 2003

The more you look at the drawings, graphics or even pictures of Milan Stasevic, because pictures too look like drawings on canvas, the more you are convinced that this painter pushes you or better say obliges you to shift from the usual to a coded language in the communication with his work, to a met lingual speech dominated by signs and forms which are somewhere between language and painting and then suddenly a pure painting. Then there again follow formal changes and the cycle never closes but perhaps leaves a free space to new and different cycles again.
The point is in a special concept and approach to the creation of a drawing or picture. You first catch the choice of format, specific base like the whiteness of paper or a newspaper stuck on canvas and then a canvas as grey as a stone or as has happened recently, return to the whiteness of paper or canvas. And then you recognize a choice of plans which the artist works out precisely, the choice of themes, change of light and dark surfaces, the usage of citations and harmonization, diversified dialogue, certain harmonic and full current through quite new interpretation and reading of the all selected. Then you yourself let all your understanding, impression and discovered worlds pass through the artist’s personal diopter and his own comprehension, intimate experience, emotions, feelings and interpretation. All this also gave Stasevic undreamed-of possibilities in creating his personal painting expression and also further strengthened his stylistic ambition to establish authenticity and get a universal painting interpretation from local Banat scenery for example.
Originally, Milan Stasevic himself divides his themes up into those of time type such as day and night and season and those of space type like fields, yards, granaries, cottages and poetics of roofs and Banat villages in general.  He wants to solve the mystery of life when also drawing the Cemetery or the Midnight Wedding Guests, the Partridges or the Cottage, when drawing the Legend of birth and death, the end of the world or the origin of writing. You always feel certain questions and the mystery of numerous secrets. And as he himself says, changeable moods effect unity of sky and earth within an image and within a formal plan of a painting. They effect the tone and sense of a painting story. His intention to incorporate everything in accordance with his own cartographic rules is quite evident.
It is certainly a question of an interesting and special painting vocabulary, language, gesture and expression of signs from many and most different epochs. Those are signs chosen carefully from those prehistoric forms and signs from archaeological artifacts or cave walls (the Forgotten Origin of Drawing or the Vinca Ram) to the cuneiform and hieroglyphic writings (the Story of the Origin of Writing), figures taken from the Egyptian friezes, Chinese orthography and Japanese estampes, renaissance emblematic scenes or figures, then from the usage of letters and numbers rarely to the citations of great maestros of modern art like Mondriani, Picasso, Mirò,  Klee, Matisse and others. Besides, on his works from the nineties we can here and there find a headline from daily newspapers, papers incorporated into the base prepared in a special way. We feel the presence of another medium, which like the usage of some computer signs, also is a symbol of modern and chaotic heterogeneous spirit of times we live in and also compliments and finalizes skillfully composed civilization orbit. You think for a moment of maps or “disks” which the artist sends to some other civilization. As if Stasevic feels obligated to transfer through the mental and imaginary space some of chosen forms, ideas, figures, details, manuscripts and different painting languages from the enormous fund of the all art history. In brief, selected mysterious meaning of divine creations if we take it as strength of talent and imagination of remarkable creators. He took for granted to have his own affinities. Fascinated by Giotto’s frescoes from Assisi, grey and bluish stone tones and umbra of Piero della Francesca, drawings of Leonardo and Dürer, as well as the works of other great maestros in the world museums, he decides to transform his fascination into new possible and impossible unities, scenes from different worlds and epochs, to “watch through something different”, to search for interesting solutions and special techniques of painting, to dream and at the same time build up new imaginary worlds, special games of memories and special painting icons of nowadays. And then, there follows further purging of painting exhibits. There are no more present times, no more innovations, the base is grey, the composition getting more simple, the surface more even and the fragmentation visible. The sign is reduced to a print, detail, scratched stroke, almost abstract, actually driven to a record, new meaning, a TRACE. This is not yet the end of the cycle. Freedom, which only invention can impose and imply, returns him back to the beginning of his painting story. We shall see to which point and what solutions.?

Borka Bozovic

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