Zoran Mušič retrospective to be put on display in Vienna

Vienna, 6 April - A retrospective of works by Zoran Mušič (1909-2005), one of Slovenia's great 20th century painters, will go on display at the Leopold Museum in Vienna next week. Featuring more than 160 works, the exhibition will present all periods of "this silent loner's oeuvre" between 13 April and 6 August, the museum said.

An exhibition of works by Zoran Mušič (1909-2005).
Photo: Daniel Novakovič/STA
File photo.

Displayed works have been loaned from public and private collections from Austria, Italy, Slovenia and Switzerland, with the Slovenian Museum of Modern Art contributing its records and several of the artist's works.

According to Ivan Ristić, who curated the exhibition with Leopold Museum head Hans-Peter Wipplinger, the exhibition tries to shed light on all important periods of Mušič's oeuvre.

The exhibition, entitled Poetry of Silence, starts off with Mušič's visits to Dalmatia in the 1930s and his first works created in Venice during the Second World War, continues with his Dacahu drawings, his venture into abstraction around 1960 and his return to figural works in the 1960s, and concludes with his late works, including double portraits and Venetian vedute.

Among the highlights of the exhibition are Mušič's Cavallini from Dalmatia and the his 1970 We Are Not the Last series, in which the artist, who was sent to Dachau in 1944, processed the "inextinguishable trauma of his experience at the concentration camp".

"These unsparing visions of horror were followed by atmospheric renderings from Mušič's adopted Venetian home as well as by numerous self-portraits painted using muted-colours.

"They are testament to his untiring quest for answers to the basic questions of human existence," the museum said.

Ristić pointed out in a recent interview for the newspaper Delo that Mušič never "bowed to market demands or to trends in art". That is why the Slovenian artist deserves a place among the 20th century individualist greats such as Alberto Giacometti, Francis Bacon and Lucian Freud.

Mušič, born in the south-western region of Primorska, spent much of his post-war life between Venice and Paris, but always returned to the Kras landscape of his home in his works.

© STA, 2018