Vlastimir Mikić Volcano
November 4th - 16th, 2013
Mikić during 2010 – 2011 performs a cycle of images that he displays in October of the same year at the solo exhibition in the Gallery 73. They are oil on canvas, of pure colors, measuring 100 × 113.5 cm larger, 34 × 45 and 40 × 45 cm smaller formats, regularly with a wooden element in the lower part, which gives these pictures the appearance and status of a specific “object”. At first glance the pictures are “abstract”: the only and constant motive of the whole cycle is a properly organized whole composed of a standard number of identical units (usually 5 × 5) in a rigorous structural schedule. But the way of painting these units covers the subtle trap of observation: they are shown to the viewer in the illusionistic projection of the impression of mild projections/depressions on a two-dimensional painted surface. Therefore, these images cause some possible associations on the seen or potentially existing phenomenal realities, and hence in their way they represent the “subject”. Knowing for the artist’s previous tendencies towards new technological media, it would be worthwhile to conclude that painting is the result of what is due to imagination saturated with the inconsistency of screen and computer-generated images. Mikić’s painting of his second Belgrade phase is another possibility of “painting in the time of mass media”, but the special feature of this cycle – unlike the rise of media performance in the previous Quick Time – consists of creating a surprising visual effect away from each simple and unambiguous thematic recognition. This painting is not based on creating the image of a media with a classic manual process, it actually implies a media image in its mental status, confirming that today’s image can not actually be thought of, and therefore not taken, beyond the knowledge of the inevitable and ubiquitous environment of “artificial intelligence” and “Scientific imagination”. Here pictures are in series, in the family-related entities, “encoded images”, each of which is not sufficient for itself to bear the total meaning of the artist’s intention, but only takes its meaning as an integral part of a whole set in the gallery space. The artist is aware of the concept of the cycle origin and with the desire to introduce and direct the viewer to an appropriate understanding of his subject, and he accompanied a viewer with the following interpretation:
“Possible assumptions and associations:
Erotic, intimacy, fear, control, pleasure.
Vlastimir Mikić Volcano is one of the main protagonists of Belgrade’s 80’s trans-avant-garde and pioneers of digital art on New York’s art scene.
Mikić was one of the actors of the artistic group “Žestoki”, whose painting is characterized as “new wave art” or “new painting”. He is the founder and first director of the famous Belgrade club Academy at FLU, which formed the core of the new Belgrade art scene in the early eighties.
Vlasta Mikić Volcano lived and worked in New York from 1985 until 2004. He exhibited in prestigious galleries Archetype, Studio 515, Postmasters Gallery, Art Klub Baktun, Knitting Factory, The Tunnel, Roseland Ballroom, The Gertrude Stein Repertory Theatre and other. He exhibits with Serbian artists in America (Marina Abramović, Raša Todosijević, Zoran Belić Weiss, Vesna Golubović…) at two exhibitions called Remember Yugoslavia: 1993 at the Art in General Gallery in New York, 1995 in Los Angeles at the Second International Biennale. In 1993, with a group of artists, he founded an electronic art collective from Brooklyn and Manhattan, the FPU (Floating Point Unit). The pioneers of digital art in New York, artists gathered around the FPU are the first to organize live art transmissions through the Internet. FPU exhibits and organizes a large number of events until 1998 when it ceases to operate. Upon his return to Belgrade (2004), Mikić became involved in the artistic life of Serbia.
He lives and works in Belgrade and New York.