Senses - Natalija Miladinovic solo exhibition in Strasbourg - Council of Europe

Artist Natalija Miladinović presented herself to the European audience for the second time in this institution and in this city with the independent exhibition "Senses", which was opened on October 25 in the building of the Council of Europe in Strasbourg.

The exhibition was attended by the president of the Art Club of the Council of Europe, Katarina Bilard, who opened the exhibition, the founder of Europe's Art Gallery and organizer of the exhibition, Iana Stantieru, the curator and director of the Museum of Applied Arts in Belgrade, Biljana Jotić, as well as the representative of the Serbian mission in the Council of Europe, Mr. Marko Potić.

Natalija Miladinović is an artist who expresses herself equally well through photography, sculpture and painting, and at the exhibition "Senses" she presented the last series of works framed by the theme of sensuality and the senses. Art historian and curator Biljana Jotić stated that Natalija's works talk about the touch of the outer and inner spaces. "The artist invites us to think about the understanding of diversity, to consider the possibility that some future time will define the non-existent "sixth" sense that will lead us to new experiences and interpretations, and therefore new creative processes." added the curator.

During the opening of the exhibition, Natalija gave special thanks; to the Art Club of the Council of Europe, the Europe's Art organization led by Ian Stantieru, our curator and director of the Museum of Applied Art in Belgrade, Biljana Jotić.

Natalija is the first artist from Serbia who received an invitation to exhibit at the Council of Europe back in 2018, when she participated in the group exhibition "Woman in art for peace" and delighted the professional public with her artwork "Peace". The preparation and opening of this year's solo exhibition was postponed by the Covid 19 virus pandemic.

Natalija Miladinović was born in 1988 in Belgrade. She graduated in 2014 from the Faculty of Applied Arts in Belgrade, Department of Applied Painting. Since 2017, he has been a member of ULUS. She participated in more than 70 exhibitions in Serbia and abroad.

About the exhibition

As we strive for wholeness, we perceive senses...

Let's imagine some indefinite space and ourselves in the center of it. Close your eyes, ears, mouth, plug your nose. Think. What is happening in these moments and can we touch reality without the senses? The human body is the best witness of our existence, and the mind is the area of concentration of our experiences. In philosophy, a human learns about the world, feels it and changes it, further exploring it through psychology; in religion, the human mind tells and shows its nature through the experience it creates through activity. Art connects and sublimes all these processes of thought and senses to pursue the whole. Art opens up the space inside a painting towards the space of the observer and kindles his/her own experience and reflection, thus uniting those two spaces.

The exhibition of paintings "Senses" by Natalija Miladinović opens a new space for answers to questions about the constant striving for a balance between body and spirit. And if we look back at her previous artwork, from painting and sculpture to photography, we can see that in the core of it lays a universal visual story about the aspiration towards the unity of body and spirit, the harmony of the whole being. And if our experience of the external world is perceived through senses, then the paintings from the "Senses" cycle, which are nameless, can be observed as meeting points of the space of the creator and the space of the observer, where the energy of different sensibilities becomes united, where feelings get sublimed and thoughts are moved and ignited.

Inside the canvas is an entire world that concentrates the vibrations of different sensibilities, enclosed in a frame that we call a painting. And if we observe it through eyesight, we can talk about the relationships between form and background, line and color, drawing and background, identical dimensions and the unidentical gestures within them, and lightness and darkness. All of these dramatical contrasting effects of a reflection of the experienced take us further to an intriguing thought about the question: what if we don't see? In regard to this, the artist consciously applies layers of colors to the places preceded by a drawing, thinking about the tactile, sense of touch. In this motive, we will recognize the engaged side of her expression and the need to indicate that the lack of a sense is not a defect, but only a different space of experience and a form of interaction.

If we were to follow the words of Immanuel Kant: "The limits of my experience are the limits of my knowledge", Natalia's works show us a story about the touching of the exterior and interior spaces. We are witnessing the global pandemic situation through which all of us went together, and which brought up, in addition to isolation, precisely the issue of senses. With this in mind, the exhibition can also be observed in the context of the loss of the existing senses of smell and taste and new relationships to sensuousness. The artist invites us to think towards an understanding of diversity, to consider that, maybe, the future will define the nonexistent "sixth" sense that will lead us to new experiences and interpretations, thus creative processes.

Biljana Jotic

MA History of Art and Curator