Predrag Todorović, Paintings 2023 – 2024

From 14 March to 7 April, the National Museum of Modern Art presents, at the Josip Račić Gallery, an exhibition of Predrag Todorović called Paintings 2023 - 2024. where the artist presents himself with six recent large format works in mixed media. In the text of the accompanying bilingual catalog of the exhibition, which was graphically designed by Ana Zubić, Klaudio Štefančić, senior curator of the NMMU and the head of the Collection of Watercolors, Drawings and Graphics and the Collection of New Media NMMU among other things, writes: Unlike the mainstream of postmodern art, Todorović quotes without irony or distance. Moreover, his explanations of his own work are often cautious formulations in search of authentic experience. Other statements, in turn, openly invoke a metaphysical subtext of art. It is unclear whether Todorović’s engagement with the past takes the form of intertextuality or pastiche. What is clear, however, is that in the second half of the 1990s, Todorović moves away from the dominant line of postmodern painting. Although reduced to the very basics of modernist aesthetics (What is a painting? A symbolic surface framed by a real or institutional framework), Todorović’s paintings and drawings are not non-expressive. Their expressiveness does not lie in the colourful and symbolically chaotic painting of the 1980s but rather in the legacy of Abstract Expressionism on the one hand, and in the practice of critiquing that legacy by Conceptual art on the other. Instead of painting, by creating ambiguous representations, Todorović has chosen to scratch or cast the painting. Instead of narrating, he has decided to seek, first an existential and then a metaphysical foothold, in painting.
This prominent artist, who lives and works in Zagreb, was born in 1966 in Drvar (Bosnia and Herzegovina), received his BFA from the Faculty of Teacher Education, University of Rijeka, in 1990, where he majored in Painting. He has so far exhibited his works at more than 50 independent and numerous collective, juried and selected exhibitions in Croatia and abroad. His works are represented in the holdings ofthe Museum of Modern and Contemporary Art Rijeka, Museum of Contemporary Art Zagreb and the National and University Library in Zagreb, as well as in numerous private collections both at home and abroad. He is a recipient of several awards and recognitions and also participated in two Artist-in-Residence programs, in Cairo (1997) and in Paris (2016). He lives and works in Zagreb.

The complete text of Klaudio Štefančić from the accompanying catalog:Klaudio Štefančić - Random Scenes as Signals of a Higher Order
Photo: Tanja Tevih © National Museum of Modern Art, Zagreb, 2024.

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