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THROUGH THE BINOCULARS OF THE GRAPHIC COLLECTIVE - MAPPING HISTORY


Bogdan Kršić


Bogdan Kršić, was a versatile artistic figure who left an indelible mark in the artistic production of the second half of the 20th century and the beginning of the new millennium with his authentic authorial attitude and recognizable visual style. Kršić was a representative of the traditional school of graphic thinking, an erudite artist, who created an extensive and rich oeuvre in printmaking, graphic design, illustration, book design and ex libris, ceramics, scenography, heraldry – all of which come together in Kršić's recognizable poetics dedicated to Man and his destiny eternally repeated.


     

     

Bogdan Kršić in his studio, 2008;
Bogdan Kršić, Dušan Petričić, Graphic Collective, 1997; Vladimir Veličković, Bogdan Kršić, Ljiljana Ćinkul, exhibition of Doca Janković, Graphic Collective, 2001.


Educated based on the models and requirements of applied artistic practices, the works of Bogdan Kršić are aesthetically carefully thought-out, as well as spiritually and intellectually rich and nurtured. The entire artistic practice of Kršić is focused on a philosophically intoned observation of Humanity, through the historical perspective of European literary, theatrical and artistic heritage. An excellent connoisseur of humanistic and classical scholarship, Kršić examines the trajectory of history/civilization, the im/possibilities of its chronology, logic and the repetition of certain phenomena. The ironic, enigmatic, grotesque, surreal, oneiric, hallucinatory, apocalyptic, eccentric, parabolic, and the fantastic, are just some of the creative layers that shape the ambience and micro-universe of his works. Close to the spiritual brotherhood of great masters – Goya, Dürer, El Greco, Kahlo, Bosch, Ensor – Kršić formulated unique visual narratives and notes on the rises and falls of Man through unique paraphrases of his famous predecessors; he celebrated the Genius of Man, but he also, in a way both lucid and sarcastic, questioned and relativized Man’s dogmas and shed light on his delusions. An energetic researcher of literary sources - Erasmus of Rotterdam, Sebastian Brant, Kanjoš Macedonović, Benvenuto Celini, Ivan Goran Kovačić, Njegoš, Milan Komnenić - instead of quotations or artistic homages, Kršić led an active creative dialogue with the anthological achievements of literature and their famous authors, examining an ambivalent relationship to History, Culture, Memory.
The expressive gesture of his drawing, with precise, concentrated linear weaving, is put in the service of stage, performative and theatrical revelations in the manner of a Renaissance graphic virtuoso. Layered and complex as an encyclopedia, Kršić's oeuvre can also be seen as a visual treatise and/or reflection on a rich artistic and life experience.


                 

     

Bogdan Kršić, Winners, 1962, aquatint / etching, 50x66 cm, Great Seal Award 1963; Bogdan Kršić, Rigoletto, 2006, aquatint / etching, 14x12 cm, Small Seal Award 2007.
Bogdan Kršić, Pit (Heads of Executioners), 1990, drypoint, 31.5x52.5 cm; Bogdan Kršić, Binoculars and Smile, 2007, etching / aquatint, 29,5x23 cm


Kršić's rich creativity and dedicated work on the affirmation of visual arts are woven into the life, professional values, and achievements of the Graphic Collective, in whose Gallery he held several solo exhibitions of prints and drawings - in 1958, 1964, 1975, 1990, 2008. He was the first ever laureate of the Great Seal Award (1963), which is nowadays a respected professional recognition that has for six decades played a significant role in the history of this medium within the visual arts scene of our region. The members of the jury for the award - Ivan Tabaković, Stojan Ćelić and Mario Maskareli - recognized a special kind of fiction and extraordinary elements of form in Kršić's aquatint/etching "Winners". An extensive bibliography of texts and critical reviews testifies to the peculiarities and achievements of Kršić's work, and a selection of these texts – from Ješa Denegri, Slobodan Ristić, Ljiljana Slijepčević and Ljiljana Ćinkul – was published in the study "Imprint of Time - History in Progress" dedicated to the Great Seal award of the Graphic Collective.


     

Monograph: Bogdan Kršić, Graphic Collective, 1968; Catalogs of Bogdan Kršić's exhibitions in the Graphic Collective (1975, 1990, 2008)


The meticulous, methodical, and responsible approach Kršić nurtured in relation to his creative aesthetic and ethics is confirmed by the fact that the artist left a detailed record of all his prints, chronologically numbered and labeled with technical data on the works. In addition to creative and pedagogical work, Bogdan Kršić was an active participant in the cultural life of Belgrade, Serbia and the former Yugoslavia, supporting the contemporary cultural scene, as a participant in numerous forums, member of selection committees and art councils, with a special focus on affirming various visual arts.

Translation: Dunja Karanović


Opening of the exhibition "From the Studio, Drawings and New Graphics" by Bogdan Kršić, Graphic Collective, April 21, 2008; the exhibition was opened by prof. Branimir Karanović


Bogdan Kršić (1932. Sarajevo – 2009. Belgrade), graduated from the Academy of Applied Arts in Belgrade in the class of prof. Mihail S. Petrov, and then continued his studies in Prague with prof. Karel Svolinski. Since 1957, he has exhibited independently (Belgrade, Brno, New York, Prague, Paris…) and at collective exhibitions in the country and abroad (Belgrade, Bucharest, Krakow, Warsaw, Berlin, Barcelona, Paris, Vienna, Minsk, Ankara…). He was a professor at the Faculty of Applied Arts in Belgrade and a member of several art associations (ULUS, ULUPUDS, Graphic Collective, EX LIBRIS Association, Czech Graphic Artists Association HOLLAR). He has won numerous awards and recognitions (selection): The Golden Needle of ULUS, The Big Seal of the Graphic Collective (1963); Graphic Biennale Gold Medal, Buenos Aires (1968); Golden Pen of Belgrade (1968, 1970); October Book Equipment Salon Award (1970); October Award of the City of Belgrade (1975); First International Biennale Award, Ankara (1986); Special Award of the Dry Needle Biennale, Užice (1993); Small Seal of the Graphic Collective (2007). Several books / studies on Kršić's work have been published: Dragan Đorđević, Bogdan Kršić (1968), Vanja Kraut, Bogdan Kršić-grafički listovi (1987), Slobodan Lazarević-Miomir Petrović, Demijurg (1997), Branislava Jevtović, U grotesknom pozorištu Bogdana Kršića (2004).




 

 

 
 
 
 
   
Graphic Collective Gallery, Dragoslava Jovanovića 11, Belgrade, Weekdays 12 - 20h, Saturdays 12 - 17h, Sundays closed
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