The First Independent Retrospective Exhibition by Raša Todosijević

Visual Arts Week of the Kaleidoscope of Culture, which runs from 24 to 29 September, will mark the first independent retrospective exhibition by Dragoljub Raša Todosijević, one of our most significant living neo-avant-garde performance, video art and installation artists.

The exhibition is called ‘Tomorrow is Monday’ and will be installed in the Museum of Contemporary Art of Vojvodina from 9 September to 5 October. The exhibition will present works of art from the collection of the Museum of Contemporary Art of Vojvodina, the Museum of Contemporary Art in Belgrade, as well as works owned by the author himself.

As one of the main protagonists of the Belgrade group of conceptual artists, to which Marina Abramović, Era Milivojević, Neša Paripović, Zoran Popović and Gergelj Urkom belonged in the seventies of the 20th century, at the time of the dominance of traditional media and uncritical modernism, Todosijević, together with colleagues, began to use new media, video, performance and artistic actions in order to reconsider the structure and functioning of the current practice, as well as society as a whole. Later, their approach will be defined as New Art Practice.

Todosijević represented Serbia at the 54th Venice Biennale of Contemporary Art with the exhibition ‘Light and Darkness of Symbols’, for which he received international recognition – the UniCredit Venice Award, as the first and only award that our pavilion has received so far at this renowned manifestation.

The works of the author, which are politically and socially critical and question traditional artistic currents and society as a whole, with a focus on the research of various media and techniques – from performances, interventions, video -works, installations and ambient settings, up to problematization of painting medium and painting technique as such, will be exhibited in the Museum of Contemporary Art of Vojvodina at the ‘Tomorrow is Monday’ exhibition.

The first retrospective exhibition by Dragoljub Raša Todosijević is an occasion to revisit his significant and extensive artistic practice, and to gather and present works from his key series in one place: Dnevnik, Decision as Art, Was Ist Kunst?, Gott Liebt die Serben, Fuxus Piano and others. The mainstay of the exhibition is the continuous activity of the author in the field of engaged art, and the questioning of the standards that rule in art systems, imposed and generally accepted principles, as criteria subject to criticism and new perception.

Avant-garde artistic practice represents innovative methods of contemporary art directly involved in the development of the social environment. The problems and issues dealt with by the author have been the strongholds of social and artistic conservatism, traditionalism and nationalism since the 1970s. The existence of engaged artistic currents in the local environment, which took place in parallel with innovative and radical artistic practices on the international art scene, is confirmed by the practice of Dragoljub Raša Todosijević, which places his work in a broader context of neo-avant-garde art. The exhibition highlights the contribution of this author to the international affirmation of the local art scene, and at the same time the importance of institutional care for the legacy of contemporary artists and its visibility.

The curator of the ‘Tomorrow is Monday’ exhibition is Sanja Kojić Mladenov, PhD. Several accompanying programmes will be held within the exhibition, such as guiding through the exhibition by Uroš Đurić and a conversation with the artist himself.

During the Visual Arts Week, the audience will have an opportunity to enjoy programmes dedicated to the rich artistic heritage and contemporary visual creativity. Visitors will witness a different concept of presenting visual art, through new art media and forms, multimedia exhibitions and a rich accompanying programme that includes documentaries, videos, performances, art installations, lectures, etc. This year, in the Kaleidoscope of Culture Visual Arts week, in addition to the first independent retrospective exhibition by Dragoljub Raša Teodosijević, one of the most significant Serbian painters of the 20th century and a representative of Serbian modernism in European painting, a large exhibition dedicated to Sava Šumanović will also be held.

In the title year of the European Capital of Culture, Kaleidoscope of Culture is held for the fifth time, from 1 September to 7 October. Throughout Novi Sad, almost 1,000 artists and experts in the fields of architecture, literature, visual, performing and applied arts from 67 countries implement more than 250 events.

The partner of the visual arts week is DDOR osiguranje.

Photo: Promo