12 May - 15 July 2023
Triumph of the Virtues - Trotoar Galerija
You know that stereotypical scene when a sorcerer or shaman digs through a collection of cards or notes in search of an ingredient that will solve a seemingly unsolvable situation?! With such determination and haste, Pavle Pavlović scrolls through the Internet in search of information and visuals that define or parody contemporary society. Selected artifacts of virtual jumble are then shamelessly opposed to painting as a traditional medium, incorporated into trippy visualizations on the border between reason and fantasy. On such quasi-idyllic intersections, the anachronistic worlds are clashing as historical-contemporary, analog-digital, human-transhuman, and serious-absurd. The question remains if those prominent artists and their timeless works are glorified or mocked by placing them in unfair comparison with characters from memes, movies, and games, endless and unnecessary but specific emblems of the steroid world we live in.
Starting from the cybernetic depths of clouds, through collage-painting approaches and digital manipulations, to the final performance in the traditional oil medium, Pavlović has an elaborate procedure for clashing painting tradition with kitsch and archetypes of popular (digital) culture. This mutates the familiar visual vocabulary from our screens into grotesque scenes that often humorously comment on the idea of human superiority. This is achieved through the apparitions of complex visual metaphors on the canvas’s surface. I consciously use the term “apparitions,” as the works mainly refer to the works and artists of late Gothic and early Renaissance painting in an effort to convey an atmosphere of supernatural providence. And just as those God-fearing artists used to mend the doctrine of original sin with their depictions of Biblical scenes, Pavlović triumphs over the virtues and traumas of life between the spiritual, the real, and the virtual.