The National Museum of Modern Art in Zagreb concludes this year’s exhibition program with a critical retrospective of Jerolim Miše, one of the greatest artists Croatian painting has ever produced, which is organized in collaboration with the Museum of Fine Arts in Split, and on the occasion of 130th anniversary of the birth and 50th anniversary of the death of this prominent Croatian painter.

The exhibition entitled Jerolim Miše: From Rebel to Bard, in which Ana Šeparović, as the author of the exhibition and set-up, presents the phenomenological and problematic review of the opus through the characteristic thematic or ideological units. Since Miše tried his hand in a variety of media and genres: painting, graphic design, art criticism and literature, the paintings in the exhibition will be accompanied by his texts, as well as those of his contemporaries. In addition, numerous forces will be highlighted – the historical, political and social context, the intellectual and spiritual horizon as well as ideologemes and spirit of the times – that were reflected in his works and that reveal to us just how incredibly layered this complex oeuvre really is. The exhibition will showcase works from all periods: from the 1910s when he, as a young painter, presented himself as a rebel who destroys old inherited values, to the post-war period when he became part of the art establishment – the bard, who earned, during his lifetime, a canonical place within Croatian visual arts.

The exhibition set-up, coordinated by Lada Bošnjak Velagić, senior curator at the National Museum of Modern Art, will bring together 130 of the artist’s paintings and drawings, mostly from the holdings of the National Museum of Modern Art and the Museum of Fine Arts in Split, but also many other museum institutions, public and private collections.

Together with the exhibition, we are going to present the book Jerolim Miše, Documents, Times, Criticism (Jerolim Miše, Dokumenti, vrijeme, kritike) published by the Library ‘History of the National Museum of Modern Art’ (Biblioteka Povijest Moderne galerije). This is the fifth in a series of publications in which this important institution, in its own way, pays tribute to the distinguished persons who participated in developing its identity and acquiring the status it so rightfully enjoys today. Respected art historian and lexicographer Ana Šeparović, PhD – whose scientific papers, beginning with her dissertation in 2014, have systematically shed light on Miše’s long career – prepared this book which provides a selection of his art criticism and a cross-section of the artist’s public activities, who despite formally being the director of the National Museum of Modern art for a short period of time (from 1 April until 1 July 1955), directly influenced its structure and exhibition activities over a long period. The book’s editor Libuša Jirsak, PhD, until recently a senior curator at the National Museum of Modern art, organized and edited three previous publications of the same library.

Translated by Robertina Tomić
Photo: Goran Vranić ©Modern Gallery, Zagreb

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