Everyday Life of Chairs / Gorgona

Everyday Life of Chairs / Gorgona

From the Macura Collection

07 December 2006 - 07 January 2007

Programme coordinator: Dejan Sandić, International Cooperation Curator
With the exhibition From the Macura Collection – Everyday Life of Chairs / Gorgona the Museum of Applied Art continues its cooperation with the collectors of applied art works and makes it possible for the general public to get acquainted with interesting and valuable works from private collections through professional and systematic presentations in the Museum.

Owing to his exceptional flair to discover and recognize valuable artworks (locally and internationally), Vladimir Veljko Macura has acquired in a short time a significant prestige among European art connoisseurs and collectors.

Although primarily interested in twentieth century avant–garde movements, Macura also collects paintings and sculptures as well as artworks from the area of applied art and design.

Leaving it to the collector to freely choose the representative exhibits from his applied art collection, the Museum has endeavoured to strengthen unobtrusively the conceptual and thematic aspects of the exhibition, so that the subjective choice of Vladimir Macura would allow us to understand simultaneously both the principles and impulses that drive him as collector and a small part of his interesting and enigmatic personality.

Metaphysics and conceptuality, although not usually present in the area of applied art, presenet the fields of interests of Vladimir Macura. They are best and most completely reflected in his passionate interest in Gorgona – a 1960s avant–garde movement from Zagreb.

There lies the reason for an uncommon choice and the decision to relate the unrelated and present the Belgrade public with an exhibition that transforms the everyday routine of sitting into a creative challenge and links some of the most significant names of industrial design from the mid–twentieth century, such as Aarnio, Eames, Breuer, Wgner, Panton, Colani, and other legendary designers, with the insufficiently known protagonists of Gorgona.

The leading personalities in this group of authors were Josip Vaništa, Julije Knifer, Radoslav Putar, Marijan Jevšovar and Dimitrije Bašićević–Mangelos. Interrelated with their shared interests, they met occasionally, talked politely, corresponded, sent homeworks and inquiries to one another, participated in group performances they choreographed themselves, stood as models for photographs and made photos, organized exhibitions and published Gorgona magazine… and everything was imbued with humour, jest and paradox.

In 1977, at the exhibition in the Gallery of Contemporary Art in Zagreb, more than a decade after the dissolution of Gorgona, art critics retrospectively interpreted the phenomenon which had not been recognized before and concluded that Gorgona anticipated some of the most important movements of the second half of the twentieth century, such as non–objective art, conceptualism and performance art, and defined Gorgona as one of the most interesting phenomenon of the mid–twentieth century.

Edited by Dejan Sandić, after the catalogue introduction

The exhibition has a catalogue published by the Museum of Applied Art with original texts by Radonja Leposavić, publicist, and Dejan Sandić, MAA curator.