Malta bienale 2024

Fine arts and heritage, Serbian pavilion

Painting and sculpture as media that carry ideas come from the very beginnings of recognizing artistic expression in man. The theme of the exhibition concept with a Site specific character, two genders (female/male), two basic elements (water/earth) and two media of movable heritage (painting/sculpture), come together in a dialogue of the need to protect specificity, simultaneously heritage and contemporary creativity. This slightly romantic concept refers to the romantic view of the idea of white sea olive groves.

Authors: Biljana Jotić, curator / commissioner

Artists: Ivana Živić; Djordje Stanojević / Miodrag Rogan


  • The name of the pavilion:

FINE ARTS AND HERITAGE: Visual Dialogue and Spatial Communications

  • First and last name of the curator:

Biljana Jotić, art historian, curator, UPU director, Commissioner

  • First and last name of the artist:

Ivana Živić, painter

Prof. Djordje Stanojević, painter

Miodrag Rogan, sculptor

Text author: Biljana Jotić

Visual identity: Irina Ivković
Realization: Museum of Applied Art on behalf of the Ministry of Culture of the Republic of Serbia


Ivana Živić:

Đorđe Stanojević:


Miodrag Rogan


FINE ARTS AND HERITAGE: Visual dialogue and spatial communications

Although in most cases we considered protection as that of architectural design, immovable and intangible heritage, this project imposes the need to protect movable and tangible heritage as well as artistically creative techniques. In the age of parallel realities, as well as physical and virtual perspectives of existence, paintings and sculptures represent matter, a tactile form that emanates from man. The visual elements of the composition communicate with each other and act within the composition, carrying conceptual or spatial foundations.

The image as a medium that carries an idea, a vision of reality or a fiction of reality, originates from the very beginnings of recognizing artistic expression in man. The image follows and survives the flow of time, from the traces of existence in caves, through the civilizations of the old and new ages, the middle and new centuries to the modern and contemporary era. In terms of duration, the painting is the embodiment of a disappearing medium that reflects the need for protection. This fact connects the concept of the Serbian pavilion with the general theme of the Malta Biennale 2024.

When today, in an age bearing the prefix ‘post,’ we talk about sculpture – a three-dimensional form of artistic expression – we sentimentally consider it to be shaped by the hand of the artist. Known since the early years of history and throughout the course of civilization, sculpture was an inseparable part of spatial formations, at times in the form of flushness and plasticity in conjunction with architecture, but sometimes independently. What distinguishes it from other forms of artistic expression is that it includes space, a new dimension in which the sensibility of artistic expression is concentrated. The importance of the materialization of the conceptual basis is an additional part of the artist’s skill, which makes it a unique field of expression and skill, art and craft.

The starting point of professor and creator Djordje Stanojević is nature, Mother Earth and its elements and what arises form this, in concert with human existence. After several years of designing for various media within the world’s art streams, he decided to return to the core from which he originates and which rouses him. He returned to painting and his birthplace, where he commenced the story of the essential connection between Nature and Art. His creative specificity is recognized in his unique need for the primordial. His studio is a space, open and unlimited. He exposes the raw material on the canvas, as well as soil and natural pigments, to the external atmospheric influences of that moment and that specific climate, whose traces become the painting itself.

Ivana Živić, an artist who for many years has been searching for the abandoned spaces of castles, houses, and churches, transposes them into paintings, onto a canvas that she fills with water through which women sometimes swim or are as blank as the same canvases, thus countering the modern age. The conceptual basis of her associative spaces and imaginary “swimmers” directly censure the contemporary age of alienation, that from not only nature but also from ourselves. The increased sensibility appears through direct communication, enticingly beckoning each individual observer to dive deep into those watery spaces.

One of the artists with a notable character, Miodrag Mišo Rogan, leaves a part of himself in shaped forms in his hitherto creative journey. Without giving up at any moment from the roots of master and craft techniques, he visually defines the spaces with a specific sensibility. There are frequent examples of his expression that lean towards abstraction, that is, the reduction of shaped forms that are recognizable to the eye and lead to a field of new recognition in which thought processes are ahead of the visible. The notion of sculpture connects with human space, whether internal or external. … “We should have realized that the third dimension is very important for the shaping of our being.”

The curatorial concept of a dialogue between painting and sculpture, as well as three contemporary artistic specificities firmly connected with a critical attitude towards the contemporary post-global spirit and new technologies that create a new reality, the Fine Art and Heritage project indicates the need to preserve the existing experience and tradition, local character and crafts. Two genders (the female and male artist), two basic elements (water and earth), converge in one theme – a visual and spatial dialogue that carries a message about the need for preservation and protection.

Art is a space for communication, which is what this project indicates. The terms of time and space are incomplete. The correlation with heritage in the context of time can be viewed from both sides, in terms of tradition and in terms of new technologies that lead to a new reality and relationship to heritage. Also, space – in the sense of connecting territorial specificities and characteristics, as well as global thought. Thus, the observer becomes a witness, that is, a user of the space, creating his or her own tactile experiences.

The concept of this exhibition with a Site specific character carries a message about spatial adjustment and communication. Bringing the specifics of Serbian heritage and contemporary authors with a specific identity into a space that is characteristic of Malta’s heritage is a moment of connection and communication within authenticity. This somewhat romantic concept indicates a rather romantic view of the concept of “white sea olive groves.”


Biljana Jotić

Art Historian (МА), Curator