GORGONA, POSTGORGONA

curated by Danka Sosic & Zarko Vijatovic

25 March – 27 May 2017

Gorgona was non-conventional art group that was formed in the late ‘50s in Zagreb. The painters Julije Knifer, Marijan Jevšovar, Đuro Seder and Josip Vaništa used to get together regularly with sculptor Ivan Kožaric, architect Miljenko Horvat and art historians Dimitrije Bašičević Mangelos, Matko Meštrović and Radoslav Putar. This informal group was on the fringe of the art scene in former Yugoslavia, in voluntary isolation. Its members never issued a manifesto, nor collective goals. During the ‘60s, through their meetings, exchanges of ideas, and intellectual and spiritual ties, they began to create collective works and actions. Between 1961 and 1966 they published the anti-magazine Gorgona, each issue was designed by an artist as a work in its own right. They organized collective and solo-exhibitions at an alternative exhibition space, the framing shop Salon Šira, that they called Studio G.

The group members had strong connections with other avant-garde artists like Lucio Fontana, Enzo Mari, Robert Rauschenberg, Harold Pinter, François Morellet, and Yves Klein. Dieter Roth and Vasarely both published an issue of the anti-magazine Gorgona, and Piero Manzoni created three proposals entitled Tavole di accertamento, though he never produced an issue of the magazine.

Gorgona magazine has ceased publication in 1966 after eleven issues, but Gorgona has not completely disappeared. It manifested itself through the Postgorgona and then Post Scriptum issues, which are also covered by the show.

For the proto-conceptual practice of Gorgona a “Gorgonic spirit” is evoked, i.e. a nihilist and philosophical mental state in which the sole objective was pursuit of total artistic and intellectual freedom, where ample space was set aside for recurring themes such as repetition, the void, death, time, denial, destruction, but also formal considerations like the line, the pure form, the circle, black and white. 

Moreover, the dematerialization of work of art brought them in the sphere of action. Through outings, assemblies and meetings they intended to surpass and transcend the materiality of work of art.

Accompanied by a vast archive of works, photographs, catalogues and material of the studio G., the exhibition Gorgona, Postgorgona is organized around the main themes addressed by Gorgona,

attempting to reconstruct the particular spirit of the group and a complex artistic practice that included multiple group actions covered by extensive photographic documentation gathered together with drawings, paintings and sculptures, undertaken individually, but shared within the group members.

We would like to thank everyone who has been involved in the realization of this exhibition. 

Exhibition Works

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Gorgona, Action, The hour of recreation - playing football with the village boys, 1961-62, 14 silver gelatin prints, cm.13x18 each
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Gorgona, Gorgona window shop, 1961, silver gelatin print, cm.18x24
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Josip Vanista, Gorgona, 1977, silkscreen on paper, cm.71x50, ed. 50
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Gorgona, The Visit, Gorgona members visiting Vijatovic’ exhibition, 1988, 2 silver gelatin prints, vintage, cm.24x18,1 each
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Gorgona, Change of identity, Gorgona members showing Jevsovar’s catalog, 1980, 2 silver gelatin prints
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Miljenko Horvat, Gorgona House, 1963, silver gelatin print, cm.23x29
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Miljenko Horvat, Untitled, 1957, Mixed tecnique on paper, cm.29x21
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Miljenko Horvat, Untitled, 1958, Ink on paper, cm.26,5x20
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Miljenko Horvat, Untitled, 1958, Ink on paper, cm.26,5x20
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Miljenko Horvat, Untitled, 1958, Ink on paper, 1958, cm.21x15
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Miljenko Horvat, Untitled, 1958, Ink on paper, cm.21x15
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Miljenko Horvat, Untiled, 1958, Ink on paper, cm.21x15
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Miljenko Horvat, Untitled, 1957, Mixed tecnique on paper, cm.29x21
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Miljenko Horvat, Untitled, 1964, Vintage photograph, cm.23x22
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Josip Vanista, Thoughts for the Month, 1964-2010, collage with vintage documents, cm.50x70
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Josip Vanista, Room, 1967, pencil on paper, cm.50x70
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mangelos, Fatamorgana (a Paris quand j'etais mort), m.6, 1957 – 1963, oil on wooden board, cm.47x80,7
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Gorgona, Still Alive, Julije Knifer, 1994, 2 silver gelatin prints, cm.20x30
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Julije Knifer, Response to the survey if they will continue the activities of Gorgona, 1964, collage, cm.10x12
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Julije Knifer, Untitled, 1967, oil on canvas, cm. 65x48
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Julije Knifer, Composition, 1962, oil on canvas, cm.48x60
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Julije Knifer, 3-12. XII. 78, 1978, drawing on paper, cm.36x48
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Gorgona, Photo performance, Gorgona members on Julije Knifer 1st solo exhibition, Zagreb, 1966, silver gelatin print, cm.8,5x30
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Gorgona, Photo performance, Gorgona members on Julije Knifer 1st solo exhibition, Zagreb, 1966, silver gelatin print, cm.18x24
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Gorgona, Photo performance, Gorgona members on Julije Knifer 1st solo exhibition, Zagreb, 1966, silver gelatin print, cm.18x24
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Gorgona, Photo performance, Gorgona members on Julije Knifer 1st solo exhibition, Zagreb, 1966, silver gelatin print, cm.18x24
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Ivan Kozaric, Let’s break the frames, 2008, broken canvas, wooden frame, foil, tripod, cm.77x64x145
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Josip Vanista, Photocompensation, Over painting, Eugène Delacroix portrait, 1961, oil on silver gelatin print, cm.14,2x12,2
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Josip Vanista, Photocompensation, Over painting, Milan Horvat portrait, 1961, oil on silver gelatin print, cm.14,2x12,2
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Josip Vanista, Photocompensation, Over painting, Paul Gauguin portrait, 1961, oil on silver gelatin print, cm.14,2x12,2
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Josip Vanista, Genése de l’Assommoir, 1953, collage, cm.70x50
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Josip Vanista, Levitating men (without ladder), 1989, silver gelatin print, cm.39,5x30
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mangelos, Manifesto on Impresionism, 1977, silkscreen on paper, cm.71x50
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mangelos, Manifesto on the psychological life of Picasso and the assumed pantha of altamira, 1977, silkscreen on paper, cm.71x50
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mangelos, Projects and themes, 1978, tempera and pencil on paper, 12 units, cm.16,4x10,9 each
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mangelos, Hamurabi, 1977, silkscreen on paper, cm.84x52
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Julije Knifer, TÜ-H-DA, 1987, acrylic on canvas, diptych, cm.120x180
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Julije Knifer, Untitled, 1967, oil on canvas, cm. 65x48
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mangelos, Negation de la peinture, 1951-56, tempera on paper, cm.23,7x16,7
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mangelos, Negation de la peinture, 1951-56, tempera on paper, cm.23,7x16,7
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mangelos, Negation de la peinture, 1951-56, tempera on paper, cm.23,7x16,7
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Ivan Kozaric, Let's break the frames, 2007, broken canvas and wooden frame, cm.50x60x7
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Ivan Kozaric, Let’s break the frames, 2007, broken canvas, wooden frame, cm.60x62x10
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Ivan Kozaric, Broomstick, 2007, broomstick, gold spray, cm.142x32x8
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Josip Vanista, Silver line on silver surface, 1964, oil on canvas, cm.140x180
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Josip Vanista, Black line, 1961, collage and pencil on paper, cm.32,5x40
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Josip Vanista, Deposition, Action with Gorgona members Marijan Jevšovar and Radoslav Putar, 1986, digital print on archival paper, cm.48x33
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Josip Vanista, Promenade, 1989, silver gelatin print, cm.18x24
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Josip Vanista, Untitled, 1966, watercolor, cm.32x43
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Ivan Kozaric, Red line, 2013, acrylic marker on canvas, cm.70x50
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Ivan Kozaric, Blue line, 2013, acrylic marker on canvas, cm.70x50
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Duro Seder, Painting III, 1970, oil on canvas, cm.130x98
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Ivan Kozaric, Untitled, 2009, acylic on canvas, cm.70x50
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Ivan Kozaric, Untitled (red circle), 2009, acrylic on canvas, cm.70x50
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, Untitled, 1960, ink and charcoal on paper, cm.47,8x35,8
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, Untitled, 1965, ink and charcoal on paper, cm.48x35,5
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Duro Seder, Untitled, 1965-70, charcoal, ink on paper, cm.48x35,8
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Duro Seder, Untitled, 1965-70, charcoal, ink on paper, cm.50x35,5
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Duro Seder, Untitled, 1969, ink on paper, cm.62,3x44
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, Untitled, 1971, ink on paper, cm.62,3x44
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Duro Seder, Untitled, 1972, ink on paper, cm.62,3x44
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Josip Vanista, Project for sphere, 1961, pencil on paper, cm.30x20
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Julije Knifer, 1 c (1 c.a) - 21.X.77 ZG, 1977, pencil on paper, cm.30x39,5
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Julije Knifer, 1 XII - 10 11 XII 77 ZG, 1977, graphite on paper, cm.32x41
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Julije Knifer, 15-16 XI.77 ZG, 1977, pencil on paper, cm.36x50
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Julije Knifer, 20-28.IV 78, 1978, pencil on paper, cm.36x48
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Julije Knifer, 20b - 26.X.77 ZG 1, 1977, pencil on paper, cm.30x39,5
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Julije Knifer, 23b - 27.X.77 ZG, 1977, pencil on paper, cm.30x39
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Julije Knifer, 9a - 5.X.77 ZG1, 1977, pencil on paper, cm.28x38
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Ivan Kozaric, Refrigerator/Shape of space, 1963, plaster, cm.28x25x24
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Ivan Kozaric, Untitled, ca. 2002, plaster, cm.38x11x12
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Ivan Kozaric, Shape of space, 1963, plaster, cm.24x15x13,5
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Ivan Kozaric, Sphere, 1972/2002, gilded wood, diameter cm.40
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Ivan Kozaric, Self-portrait, 2007, bronze, cm.30x22x23
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Ivan Kozaric, Hat, 2007, bronze, cm.13x24x22
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