Cooperation between the Museum of Contemporary Art and the Institute for Literature and Art
The exhibition is authored by: Aleksandra Mirčić (Museum of Contemporary Art) and Biljana Andonovska (Institute for Literature and Art).
The exhibition “Avant-Garde: from Dada to Surrealism” will present Surrealist and Dada magazines, as one of the primary forms of activity in these movements of the Avant-garde. Evolutionary currents and multifacetedness of Dada and Surrealist print and ideas will be showcased through more than 40 periodicals published between 1916 and 1992.
Among the magazines featured at the exhibition are the following: Cabaret Voltaire, Merz, Cannibale, Dada, Zenit, Dada tank, Dada jazz, Dada jok, Littérature, Putevi, Svedočanstva (pre-WWII), Večnost, Crno na belo, Bela revija, 50 u Evropi, Le grand jeu, Stišavanja, Tragovi, Četiri strane – I tako dalje, Commerce, Surréalisme, La Révolution surréaliste, Le Surréalisme au service de la révolution, Nemoguće, Nadrealizam danas i ovde, Danas, Naša stvarnost, Pečat, Minotaure, Documents, Acéphale, Le surréalisme, meme, L’Archibras, La Brèche, Svedočanstva (post-WWII), Delo, Mediala.
This exhibitions aims at broadening geographical, chronological, and poetical context within which to examine the devoted editorial practices of Dada and Surrealism. The exhibition follows Serbian/Yugoslav and French publications in parallel, and brings to the fore the plurality of Surrealist tendencies in both of these environments, so as to further our understanding of the specificity introduced by the activity of the official “thirteen” of the Belgrade Surrealism. Taking into account the archive materials, the Surrealist magazine is seen as one large laboratory of collective creation, with special emphasis on the issues of group organisation, automatism and simulation, desire and love, explorations-inclined and socially virulent spirit of Surrealism. Also, the exhibition indicates various ways of reassessing the legacy of Surrealism in changed cultural-political ambiance in the aftermath of the WWII.
The majority of the exhibits were examined and presented drawing on Marko Ristić’s surviving collection and the Legacy of Marko Ristić (SASA (Serbian Academy of Sciences and Arts) Archive and Library), and thus the exhibition also provides an opportunity to underscore before the wide public the unique cultural profile and relevance of this body of work which is one of the most valuable legacies of the 20th c. art at large, and the Surrealist art in particular, within the Balkans.
The exhibition is organised in the framework of the project “European Context of Serbian Surrealism”. For a detailed account of the project, go to http://nadrealizam.rs/en/page/home.
The Museum of Contemporary Art and the Institute for Literature and Art extend their special thanks to SASA Library and Archive, mrs. Jelena Jovanović, prof. Aleksandar Kostić, heirs of Oskar Davičo, Historical Archives of Belgrade, National Library of Serbia, University Library “Svetozar Marković”, Radio-television of Serbia, Academy Film Centre DKSG, as well as to numerous colleagues, for supporting the realisation of this exhibition.
The exhibition was preceded by a two-day conference organised by the Institute for Literature and Art, Museum of Contemporary Art, and Society for Serbian-French Intercultural Collaboration. The international scientific symposium gathered thirty experts and representatives of various academic institutions from Serbia, Croatia, Belgium, France, Czech Republic, Bulgaria, and Japan, who have dealt with the aspects of Dada and Surrealist poetics in the framework of the Avant-garde currents in Europe and worldwide, focusing on the mutually related art phenomena in the space of Yugoslavia and the Western Balkans, and the periodical publications as a medium. A reader consisting of the papers presented at the symposium, along with the essays written specially for this volume, is due to be released after the event.