artist / participant

press release

On September 30th the galerie davide gallo has the pleasure of hosting the first solo show undertaken by the Serbian artist Biljana Djurdjevic at a private gallery.

Born in 1973 in Belgrade, Biljana Djurdjevic has already participated in prestigious exhibitions throughout the world; such as "Blut & Honig" at the Essl Collection in Austria (2003), "Balkan Crossroad", curated by Harald Szeemann in Bologna, Italy (2003), at the Seville Biennale, curated by Harald Szeemann, Spain (2004), "Six from Europe" at the Sonoma Valley Museum, San Francisco, USA (2006) and at the Sydney Biennale, Australia (2006), curated by Charles Merwether .

The main theme explored by Biljana Djurdjevic in the new series of artworks is denied childhood. Exposed to the violence of images circulated by the media, children are portrayed with an extreme realism, caught in the moment in which they are unconsciously shaping a new identity.

In these artworks, the artist shows the inner nature of the children's personalities with a skilful attention to detail, concentrating on features such as their lost, questioning eyes or their clenched, tense hands. The scenes are depicted through an abstract environment and these settings go on to serve as a catalyst which transports the children into another realm of consciousness.

While Biljana Djurdjevic's earlier works reflected the expressions of violence tied to Balkan culture and drew inspiration from Socialist propaganda as well as from a variety of great artists - ranging from masters of the Italian Rinascimento and Barocco eras such as Michelangelo to more contemporary talents such as Francis Bacon - her new works show a transition in style and subject matter as well as drawing inspiration from Byzantine Icons. The images nonetheless maintain their characteristic still and stark form and the dialogue which results induces the viewer into being mesmerised into a feeling of eternal transfixion.

War, violence and the shocking images of our times are all hardships which the protagonists of Biljana Djurdjevic's works seem to have no direct contact with: the subjects seem to occupy a dimension which is at once unrelated and abstract from both our and their own existence. The adolescents of Biljana Djurdjevic works, their children, seem to have just awoken from a dream, caught in the passage between a hypnagogic state and reality - it remains an ambiguity: what is the real dimension, what is the oneiric one?

Davide Gallo

only in german

Biljana Djurdjevic
Paradise Lost