Serbian artist, Milan Nenezic is an amazing oil painter whose style is rooted in realism while also incorporating expressive brush strokes and transcendental subject matter. His 2014 exhibition Dreams and Visions, focuses on images and symbols that come to us in visions, dreams, hallucinations, meditations and other altered states of consciousness. Nenezic explains that these are the reflections of our fears, both of the external world and our internal frailties with symbols continually acting to expose our subconscious. When looking at these paintings, one is absorbed by an overwhelming darkness. Each painting is a haunting masterpiece brought to life by the very tension that exists within them. Nenezic using the human body to manifest ones internal struggle, producing a conflict that is extremely raw and gritty. Perfectly-painted figures struggle with their human frailties; their bodies decaying, rupturing and spluttering as they are ripped apart in the search for understanding.
What each piece suggests is quite remarkable. The headless man holding his own skull is a heroin-addicted Hamlet who is tragically ‘not to be.’ A hollow womb replaces a mans head, as if his desire is to simply be unborn and reenter his mothers enveloping safety. A man literally reaches inside himself only to expel a tar-like black substance – is that all I am? he wonders as it continues to seep. With decaying flesh and exposed ribs, a woman places herself in her resting place – a deep blue box with the overwhelming suggestion of a coffin – curled up like a cat about to die, she looks up at us and asks, ‘did you do this, or did I?’
Can we relate? Of course we can. Nightmares exist around us all the time, not only when our eyes are closed, but through the horrors of the world that reach us through a flickering screen, a newspaper article, or direct from a good friends mouth. Dreams and Visions is, of course, only a small glimpse of the nightmarish human experience, one brought to us direct from Nenezic’s personal conflicts. Body dysmorphia, inner revulsion, overwhelming, pestering thought, sexual escape and complete mental shattering are given to us on a silver, or rather, blue platter straight from the freezer. It is difficult, we do not want to hold it, but Nenezic’s confronting paintings, unlike our dreams and visions, are something we cannot run from. They will not disperse with a blink of an eye or become a faded memory. Rather, Nenezic holds up a mirror and forces it to reflect the very pit of ourselves, the lowest and most frightening pit, a dark truth, but a truth very much in need of vision.
Nenezic is a true artist. His work an enigmatic trap where we really shouldn’t stay too long, but one that we cannot leave nonetheless.
To see more visit: http://cargocollective.com/milannenezicart
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