Olja Ivanjicki: Painting the Future
by : Sue Hubbard | Aug 18, 2009
Olja Ivanjicki is one of Serbia’s most important and best-loved contemporary artists. Producing work since the 1950s, she first came to prominence in her native country with Mediala, a group of painters, writers, and architects that made a significant impact on the public and cultural life of Belgrade at the end of the fifties and beginning of the sixties. A recipient of a Ford Foundation scholarship in 1962, Ivanjicki left Serbia to live and work, albeit briefly, in the United States, where she was brought into contact with the most important prevailing artistic trend of the time, Pop Art. This was to have a lasting influence on her work. Ivanjicki’s paintings are distinguished by the way in which they combine the figures and symbols of diverse cultures and civilizations -- past, present, and future -- to form imaginative montages that evoke, in almost cinematic terms, the spirit of an age. She is, however, much more than just a painter: she is also a sculptor, poet, newspaper columnist, costume designer, and architect. The book aims to appraise these aspects of her work, as well as her painting, over the course of her long and distinguished career, and by doing so to bring her work to a wider international audience.