Zoran Music

18 November 2017 - 15 January 2018

The exhibition at Galleria d'Arte Maggiore G.A.M., curated by Flaminio Gualdoni, traces Zoran Music's research through a rich and considerable group of forty works. These pieces are significant examples of the variety of painting cycles that have made Music an internationally recognized artist: from the Dalmatian landscapes to the Italian ones, from the portraits to the still lives till the horror of the concentration camps with the series “Nous ne sommes pas les derniers". The works cover a chronological period of nearly fifty years, from the 1940s to the last creations of the 1990s, allowing us to have a complete and interesting portrait of an artistic research which is still valid today.

Zoran Music was born in Gorizia in 1909 and attended the Academy of Fine Art in Zagabria till 1935, when he finished his studies and started his numerous travels across Europe: he stayed in Madrid and Toledo, where he met the painting of Goya and El Greco, on the island of Curzola and in Dalmatia. In 1943 he visited Italy for the first time. He stayed in Venice, where he met his wife Ida, and in 1944 he was arrested and deported to the Dachau concentration camp. The agony and the horrors of the imprisonment, described in drawings and sketches realized secretly and with struggle, will be impressed in his memory forever. Once freed by the American troops, Music stayed in Gorizia for a short period in 1946 before returning to Venice, where he moved definitely.

Coming back in the main city of the Veneto Region is like returning to freedom. It is the beginning of a new life. Here Music focused on the Venetian landscape, as testified by the Chiesa del Redentore on 1947 and the various versions of the Giudecca Canal, and started the famous cycle of he Cavallini, a distinctive theme of his production well represented in the exhibition. These are fluctuating and hypnotic animals evoking a place without time and breaking the soft silence of the landscape. In those years the artist took part to the Venice Biennale: in 1948, his debut year, and later in 1950 when he won the prize Guliano, and then again in 1956 and 1960, when he is awarded with the Unesco prize for the graphic art.

“Nous ne sommes pas les derniers” (We are not the last), the series dedicated to the period of his imprisonment in the Dachau concentration camp, dates back to 1970. Music's pictorial language changes substantially after that experience: the tones here get darker and macabre and we can deeply fell the pain and the atrocities suffered by the deportees.

The exhibition path continues showing the several Italian and Dalmatian landscapes that have marked the artist's life, mixing childhood memories and visions of a past that the artist never forgot. It is thanks to the rediscovery of his native land that Music was able to overcome the dreadful experience of his imprisonment, being able to look what was around him now: the Venetian views, a theme that returned in 1981 and 1982, but also the portraits of his wife Ida. There are two examples in the exhibition from 1982. In 1984 he elaborated better the series Interni delle cattedrali, that he started in 1944.

All Music's life enters in his works. Places and events that the artist keeps on recalling to his mind till the last series of the Self-portraits he started in 1987. For the first time, Music investigated himself, finding maybe the way to conclude and comprehend his entire production.

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