Vernisáž Dejan Batrićević – Monte Bianco Negro (ilustrace) – 1.část
Do 24.11.2019 bude ve velkém sále Etnologického ústavu ČSAV, na Florenci 3, Praha 1, přístupná první část výstavy ilustrací Dejana Batrićeviće – Monte Bianco Negro.
The name of the exhibition “Monte Bianco Negro“ is more than just a simple title chosen to reflect the black and white visual works of Dejan Batrićević. Through the name and character of the exhibited works themselves, the artist clearly demonstrates his esthetic as well as political stand, which enriches the public discourse with a strongly (and permanently) needed ironical perspective as opposed to the dominant, conservative and boring instrumentalizations of national myths, works and personalities. The artist is playing with the cultural context, especially in the field of cultural heritage, distancing himself from the world of creative industry focused on commerce without taking the time to consider esthetic, cultural and political questions. And even if some do take them into account, they rarely go all the way, failing to create a completely new and autonomous world of signs. There is no better way of treating stereotypes than the way Batrićević is playing with them. That is actually a welcome way of producing meaning, a way which succeeds in its true critique of mythologization, a phenomenon which represents the key reason why the Balkans have retained its status as a periphery of Europe for such a long time. Since the particular focus is on Montenegro, what we are witnessing is primarily a deconstruction of the myth of humanity and heroism. This is successfully done by the eroticization of the image. Batrićević´s heroes and highlanders find themselves in a zone of transgression, more precisely erotic transgression. If we accept the idea that the “erotic experience is perhaps close to sacredness“, such treatment is completely legitimate, because all these themes are indeed holy to us, they are the “sacred reality, reality which can shake us to our extreme limits“ (George Bataille). It seems that they can live just like in a fairy tale, and fairy tales are the second big topic of the exhibited works. They can, but they do not want to! And why not call a fairy tale land Monte Bianco Negro, following the example of Erich von Stroheim, great personality of the silent movie era, who in 1925 made the movie “Merry Widow“, set in a land of Monteblanco, while actually refering to Montenegro. Even Montenegrin fairy tales, just like other literary works from “those“ times, have been surrounded by controversies and subjected to
misuse. For a long time, they used to be read with a primary focus on their historical and epic character, without eroticism, without poetry, without ethical questions. The fact that the works of Dejan Batrićević radiate their messages in the field of book publishing which contributes to new readings of cultural history, confirms the courage of the publisher who has offered to the public an important element of the book today, and not only today – design, in other words, its visual identity.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR:
Dejan Batrićević (*1990, Cetinje) is a Montenegrin illustrator and graphic designer. After graduating from the Faculty of Fine Arts in Cetinje, he further pursued his studies at the Academy of Arts in Novi Sad (Serbia) and Ondokuz Mayıs University in Samsun (Turkey). Since 2017, he has been studying at the Academy of Fine Arts and Design in Ljubljana (Slovenia). He recently participated at collective exhibitions in several European countries, held a solo exhibition of his illustrations at the Center of Contemporary Arts in Podgorica, illustrated an anthology of Montenegrin fairy tales and won several awards and contests, including first price at the international contest for the design of the Montenegrin pavillion at Dubai Expo 2020.
TEXT: Prof. Mr Janko Ljumović / Associate Professor / Department of Drama and Theatre / Faculty of Dramatic Arts Cetinje / University of Montenegro