Künstler / Projekt
Radenko Milak | 14|09|XX

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Duration: 14. 09. - 14. 10. 2017

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— Text
Beschreibung - English

Radenko Milak creates a space for a new way of looking via the translation of appropriated photographic motifs into watercolor. He modifies the formal pictorial language of source material found on the internet, in print media and films and therefore generates renewed interest in historical events on the part of the viewer. For KOENIG2 Radenko Milak has created a unique series which formally and in terms of content follows on the series of works created in 2013, '365 – Image of Time', yet which chronologically relates to the date of the opening of the exhibition: thus, September 14th becomes a leitmotif for all of the works shown here.

Isadora Duncan, the Twin Towers in New York, or the inauguration of Theodore Roosevelt as the 26th President of the United States: it is not Duncan's terrible death that serves as an artistic model, but rather her grace in dancing and choreography; it is not the crashing of the airplane into the building, but the devastation in New York days and even weeks afterwards. Roosevelt smilingly waves at the public, but his designation is inextricably connected to the assassination of his predecessor, William McKinley. The artist creates images whose ominous content first becomes visible via the contextualization in the titles. The causes and effects of an event are, in his work, of greater relevance than the precise moment of the occurrence.

It is the confrontation with catastrophes which has greatly occupied Milak most recently, and which is tangible in an extended form in the Bosnian pavilion of this year's Venice Biennale. In contrast to the majority of solo presentations by the countries, Milak expands his contribution in that, in addition to his own monographic show, he invites international artists, curators and writers to a direct dialogue. The goal, as stated in the accompanying publication, is the creation of a collective space for the transfer of knowledge and imagination.[1]

The second work shown at KOENIG2 is connected to this: Hiroshima, 06 August 1945 takes up the character of a series via its composition of 24 parts, and unfolds, over a width of four meters, a scenario of devastation after the dropping of the atomic bomb. The landscape dismal, the perspective mighty, the poisonously shimmering skies streaked with billowing smoke - Milak confers a supremely grotesque, poetic nuance on the vast magnitude of death and destruction. The artist was born in 1980 in Travnik in the former Yugoslavia, educated in Banja Luka and Belgrade, and lives and works today in Banja Luka. It is likely that one of the thematic focal points of his work, post-war trauma, can be attributed to Bosnia-Herzegovina, which is unstable as before.

The preferred artistic media for his black-and-white series are generally watercolors, but he also works with painting, drawing, installations and animations. The image as topos and the uninterrupted, multi-media flood of images are the principal considerations of his praxis. Milak questions the historical and contemporary realities in that he transfers the over-medicalization, and the hype often generated from it, into a type of fiction by means of his technical virtuosity. Especially in those moments when the contours threaten to dissolve, as in an out-of-focus photo, the impression emerges of a resolution, which is also contextual.

[1] Sarita Vujkovic: Foreword, in: University of Disaster. Radenko Milak With International Guests, Pavilion of Bosnia and Herzegovina at 57th International Art Exhibition – La Biennale Di Venezia, Banja Luka 2017, p. 13.

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installation view <em>RADENKO MILAK</em>, 2017installation view <em>RADENKO MILAK</em>, 2017RADENKO MILAK<br /><em>Isadora Duncan is killed in a car accident in Nizza on September 14, 1927 in Nizza</em>, 2017<br />watercolor on paper<br />34,5 x 60 cm<br />RADENKO MILAK<br /><em>Dante Alighieri died of malaria in Ravenna on September 14, 1321</em>, 2017<br />watercolor on paper<br />69 x 45 cmRADENKO MILAK<br /><em>Theodore Roosevelt became President of the United States upon the death of William McKinley in the early morning of September 14, 1901</em>, 2017<br />watercolor on paper<br />30 x 39,5 cmRADENKO MILAK<br /><em>On Kawara, SEPT.13,2001 from the 'Today Series' (1966 - 2014)</em>, 2017<br />watercolor on paper<br />29,5 x 40 cmRADENKO MILAK<br /><em>City of Eboli after the failed German counterattack during the allied Invasion of Italy on September 14, 1945</em>, 2017<br />watercolor on paper<br />41 x 49 cminstallation view <em>RADENKO MILAK</em>, 2017RADENKO MILAK<br /><em>Napoleon enters Moscow as it burns on September 14, 1812</em>, 2017<br />watercolor on paper<br />34,5 x 50 cmRADENKO MILAK<br /><em>Plumes of smoke rising from Smyrna on September 14, 1922</em>, 2017<br />watercolor on paper<br />35,5 x 50 cmRADENKO MILAK<br /><em>President Bush declares a State of Emergency on September 14, 2001</em>, 2017<br />watercolor on paper<br />35,5 x 50 cmRADENKO MILAK<br /><em>The German federal election occurred on September 14, 1930. NSDAP had received 6,371,000 votes making it the second largest party in Germany</em>, 2017<br />watercolor on paper<br />36 x 50 cmRADENKO MILAK<br /><em>The Turenne rail accident occurred on September 14, 1932 when a train carrying French Foreign Legionnaires crashed in Algeria killing 62 people</em>, 2017<br />watercolor on paper<br />36 x 50 cminstallation view <em>RADENKO MILAK</em>, 2017RADENKO MILAK<br /><em>Grace Kelly died on September 14, 1982, a day after suffering a stroke while driving her car, which caused a crash</em>, 2017<br />watercolor on paper<br />40 x 50 cmRADENKO MILAK<br /><em>The iron lung was introduced to the world by Dr. Phillip Drinker and Dr. Charles F. McKhann on September 14, 1929</em>, 2017<br />watercolor on paper<br />41,5 x 50 cmRADENKO MILAK<br /><em>The Soviet Union’s Luna 2 spacecraft intentionally crashed into the moon on September 14, 1959, becoming the first manmade spacecraft to reach the moon</em>, 2017<br />watercolor on paper<br />70 x 48,5 cmRADENKO MILAK<br /><em>Hiroshima, 06 August 1945</em>, 2017<br />watercolor on paper<br />24 parts, each 50 x 70 cm

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