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ARCHIVE · 2003

Curated by Antun Karaman 
December 23, 2003 to January 25, 2004 (extended until February 2004)

In the sculptures that are kept in the stocks of the Museum of Modern Art (147 of them) it is very easy to follow the interweaving of the generations, and at the same time the almost unbroken thread of the development of Croatian sculpture from the time of the Secession until the contemporary as it is today.
The exhibition consists of 83 sculptures by 39 artists: Kosta Angeli Radovani, Belizar Bahorić, Vojin Bakić, Mijo Demović, Josip Diminić, Dušan Džamonja, Robert Frangeš-Mihanović, Stjepan Gračan, Josip Ivanović, Ante Jakić, Stanko Jančić, Ksenija Kantoci, Želimir Janeš, Ivo Jašić, Ivan Kožarić, Kuzma Kovačić, Frano Kršinić, Milena Lah, Vasko Lipovac, Zvominir Lončarić, Ivo Lozica, Valerije Micchielli, Matko Mijić, Nikola Njirić, Ivan Meštrović, Izvor Oreb, Pavao Perić, Ratko Petrić, Petar Pallavicini, Vanja Radauš, Vjekoslav Vujo Radoičić, Branko Ružić, Ivan Sabolić, Petar Smajić, Aleksandar Srnec, Marin Studin, Marija Ujević, Miro Vuco, Šime Vulas. 

Curated by Sanja Žaja-Vrbica 
December 23, 2003 to January 25, 2004

Very early on, while still a student of famous Vlaho Bukovac at the Art Academy in Prague, Miljan adopted the plein-air form expression together with a remarkable technical skill. Along with portraits and figural compositions, local Cavtat and Dubrovnik landscape was a motif that particularly engaged Miljan. Revolutionary changes in art of the twentieth century did not influence Miljan. He painted in line with his own sensibility, true to his own poetics, disinclined to major experiments and innovations. 
However, in his stylistic frames, Miljan was capable of reaching a high quality. As a gifted follower of tradition he has a significant place in the context of Dubrovnik and Croatian art, which can be verified on his first one-man show after 50 years.

Niko Miljan was born in Cavtat on March 07, 1891. He had his first painting lessons in Dubrovnik from the watercolourist Josip Lalić, and from 1909-1913, he studies at the Academy of Fine Arts in Prague (professors V. Bukovac and J. Preisler). From 1919 to 1931 he worked as a high school teacher in Tetovo, Kruševac (1920-1925), Zemun (1925-1928) and Dubrovnik (1928-1931). In 1931, at his own request, he was retired, and devoted himself entirely to painting. During World War II he lived in Prague, right until 1949, when he left for Zagreb. He did not return to Dubrovnik until 1956. Miljan died in Dubrovnik on February 21, 1962.

Curated by Igor Zidić
November 4 to December 14, 2003

The author of the retrospective of Ivo Dulčić, the classical figure of Croatian modern art is Igor Zidić, respectable art historian and the director of Modern gallery in Zagreb, where there was the first version of this exhibition in August and September of this year. This is the largest Dulčić’s exhibition ever. Around 300 paintings and drawings from all phases of author’s oeuvre are exhibited. Works are borrowed from around fifty private and public collections: from Šibenik, Brač, Košljun, Split, Zagreb, Zadar, Rovinj... Also exhibited are the photographs, publications and documentation related to this great Dubrovnik author.

Ivo Dulčić was born in 1916 in Dubrovnik, where he attended elementary school and classics high school. He felt an inclination to artistic expression very early, and even in his high school days was working for the editors of Jež, Bruskin and some other comic papers, in which he published caricatures. At that time he also started painting, made the acquaintance of Petar Dobrović, and went to Kosta Strajnić for painting lessons. However, in spite of his vocation, in 1936 he went to Belgrade to study law. As ABD in 1941 he abandoned this course, and enrolled in the painting course of the Academy of Fine Arts in Zagreb. Just before the end of his course, in 1946, because of his resistance to socialist realist dogma and practice he came into conflict with the faculty and left the Academy and went back to Dubrovnik. The following year he ran a painting school in Flora Centre in Lapad, and in 1948 he had his first exhibition in the ULUH Dalmatia branch at the May 1st Show. From 1955 he lived between Dubrovnik and Zagreb, painting very vigorously. From 1950 until the end of his life he exhibited at 16 solo and numerous collective exhibitions at home and abroad. Dulčić was a great master of plasticity with an exceptional sense of colour and texture, a master of atmosphere and a subtle psychologist. Along with the heritage of the Parisian school, of Bonnard and the Fauves, Dulčić also took on board some of the idioms of Abstract Expressionism, which he incorporated into his basically figurative works. He was particularly important as a religious painter, because he brought practically revolutionary novelties into the area, as against practice hitherto, sometimes arousing protests from church representatives. He produced numerous murals and stained glass windows in religious and other public premises at home and abroad. For his life achievement, he received the City of Zagreb Prize in 1966, the Purchasing Prize of the Art Gallery, Dubrovnik in the same year, and then in 1975 the Commendation of HDLU on the occasion of the 30th anniversary of the organisation (Croatian Association of Fine Artists) and the 30th anniversary of the liberation of Zagreb. He died in Zagreb on March 2 1975.

Curated and realisated by: Catherine David and Museum of Modern Art Dubrovnik 
September 27 to October 10, 2003

The exhibition Dubrovnik - Here and Elsewhere / Dubrovnik - ici et ailleurs is the final part of a two-year-long collaborative venture by Catherine David and the Museum of Modern Art Dubrovnik. Artists who deal with representative strategies of the contemporary world in the visual arts are involved in the project. "These are artists that make us capable of better understanding what is going on here and in some other places, who are attempting to find the specific links between this place and other places," declared Catherine David concerning the exhibition's concept. The project and the show involved the works of Peter Friedl, Andreja Kulunčić, Maria Papadimitriou, Santiago Reyes, Liisa Roberts, Paola Yacoub and Michel Lassere. Their works were created in line with their concrete experiencing of sojourning in Dubrovnik, and ultimately they referred to the venue, its physical, historical and spiritual context.

The Collection of the Thyssen-Bornemisza Contemporary Art Foundation
Curated by Francesca von Habsburg and Max Wigram
July 9 2003 to September 6, 2003

The great international exhibition entitled Brightness was the world premiere of the Thyssen-Bornemisza Contemporary Art Collection. Among other things, the exhibition included the works of Olafur Eliasson, Douglas Gordon, Pipiloti Rist, Bill Viola, Cindy Sherman, Sam Taylor-Wood, Slaven Tolj, Peter Fischli and David Weiss. Works of the new media formed part of the exhibition (mainly photographs, video works, light and sound installations) based on light, as theme, and that included light as structural element.
The owner of the collection, Francesca von Habsburg, explaining her choice of Dubrovnik as the venue for the first ever exhibition presentation of her collection, said: "Dubrovnik must not become the victim of its own glorious past, but has to join the world community through visionary projects that through creative processes will not only spur the local community but also attract a wider international audience." The interests shared by Francesca von Habsburg and the Museum of Modern Art Dubrovnik are an interaction of the historical and the contemporary, the local and the international, and a concern for a real experience of art as against passive exploitation of the heritage.

Paintings 2002-2003
Curated by Antun Maračić
June 11 to June 19, 2003

Unlike most of his fellow artists, of his own generation and year (Breda Beban, Željko Kipke, Marijan Molnar, Antun Maračić), those who took degree from the Academy of Fine Arts in 1976 and went on with their work in the area of multimedia expression, Igor Rončević, however enthusiastic he might have been about experimentation during the time of his studies, remained loyal to painting. From the end of his training onwards, in every one of the many times he appeared before the public, showing all his exceptional sensitivity, Rončević at the same time demonstrated a cultivated and laid-back attitude towards colour and material, as well as an ability to produce forms derived from the phenomenal world that can nevertheless never be assigned to their point of origin with any absolute certainty. These are forms with the maximum of associative amplitude. Doubts as to how we see them ranged from the micro to the macro world, from the stars to bacteria. But below the surface of the vast multitude of these deceptive appearances there was actually a genuine freedom from mimesis, an autonomous plasticity. Thanks to this referential abundance and also to the ability to amalgamate models of different historical styles, at the beginning of the eighties, at the time of the new picture, or the trans-avant-garde, Igor became a significant figure at the international level, one of the most important representatives in Croatia of these trends.

Jesus Stumbling Under the Cross
An introduction of the restored painting
April 26, 2003

This painting created in 1888, commissioned for the chapel of Dubrovnik hospital was for nearly half a century outside Dubrovnik. 
It became the part of the collection of Museum of Modern Art Dubrovnik and as it was very damaged it was sent to Zagreb to be restored. It was supposed to be exhibited at Medović’s retrospective in 1958 in Art Pavillion in Zagreb. However, as it was also quoted in monograph on Medović from 1978 by Vera Kružić Uchytill, the painting was lost. Luckily, recently it has been found and restorated with the financial support of the Ministry of culture of Republic of Croatia. It has been returned to the Museum of Modern Art Dubrovnik on April 16, 2003.

From the Holdings of the Museum of Modern Art Dubrovnik 
Curated by Antun Karaman
April 26 to May 19, 2004

The Museum of Modern Art Dubrovnik has a very fair number of watercolours, temperas and gouaches of various artists in its holdings-more than 200 items all told, some of them being truly unique, anthology-piece specimens of the Croatian visual arts in modern times. The exhibition is composed of 90 works, 43 artists being represented; of these, the great majority are Croatian artists. The trump cards in the exhibition are certainly the watercolours of Vlaho Bukovac, who painted airy landscapes with a passion for their meteorology, symbols of the Mediterranean atnosphere and setting; then there is the airy, fluttering trembling of the nature of Ljudevit Šestić, and the expressive density of the subdued moods of Oskar Herman; the refined, transparent and lapidary still lifes and landscapes of Vladimir Becić; the charged colourist gesture of Ante Kaštelančić and the nervous, fragmented structurality of Ivo Dulčić, the constructivist dreaminess of Marijan well as the finely painted motifs of Ivan Domac, Marta Ehrlich, Antun Motika, Slavko Kopač, Ivan Generalić, Slavko Šohaj, Nikola Raiser, Tomislav Krizman, Marko Rašica, Ivo Švertasek, Ivo Šebalj, Petar Dobrovi and others who, in accordance with their own painterly poetics, dealt with techiques mentioned in the title of the exhibition.

Presentation of work created within the project Dubrovnik - Here and Elsewhere / Dubrovnik - ici et ailleurs:
On Genre and Power
Curated by Catherine David
April 2, 2003

Peter Friedl was born in 1960 in Oberneukirchen in Austria, and as for where he currently lives and works he usually uses the phrase “in situ”. As well in Austria and Germany, Friedl has spent quite a lot of time living in Italy, he has spent time in Haiti, and through his work is linked with many European countries, with America, and more recently with the RSA. His education and his areas of interest are quite diverse:linguistics, philosophy, history of art and theatre, but Friedl has tended to integrate these spheres into a specific artistic activity. He has exhibited at many one-man shows at respected galleries in Austria, Germany, Czech R, England and America, as well as at many important international group exhibitions, including at the 48th Venice Biennale and at Documenta X, Kassel, 1997.

Works 1997-2002
February 15 to March 16, 2003

The histrorical heritage of geometry - the October Avant-Garde, Bauhaus, De Stijl, New Tendencies, and Fluxus, are the core of Jurić’s textbook, and of his inspiration. New geometry, as an art movement, appeared at the end of the nineteen-eighties, as a reaction to the omnipresent conceptual art, and it advocates a return to painting. A small group of the “New Geometry” artists was also active in Croatia, influenced in particular by the New Tendencies of the nineteen-sixties. Jurič has met and has cooperated with them (especially with Julije Knifer), maintaining a lively contact. Recapitulating historical insights Jurić has created his own visual expression bringing it up, eventually, to a level of a recognizable, authentic, and idiosyncratic style.
Lida Roje Depolo (from the preface of a catalogue)