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Mladen Miljanovic's "Good Night - State of Body" opens at A plus A Slovenian Exhibition Centre
Mladen Miljanovic is one of the most interesting contemporary artists in the East European art scene.

VENICE.- After the New Museum in New York and the Mumok Museum in Vienna, Bosnian artist Mladen Miljanovic comes to Venice for his first Italian solo exhibition Good Night – State of Body at A plus A Slovenian Exhibition Centre. The exhibition will be presented next autumn in Regensburg and New York.

Mladen Miljanovic is one of the most interesting contemporary artists in the East European art scene. He was in fact chosen by Massimiliano Gioni for his triennial Younger than Jesus held at the New Museum in New York in 2009.

After Ibro Hasanovic’s exhibition in November 2011, A plus A continues its exploration of Balkan art with Good Night – State of Body, which features two works by Mladen Miljanovic: the film Do You Intend to Lie to Me? and the photographic work Show By Your Hand Where do You Feel Pain. During the opening, the artist will do the performance At the Edge of Margin, in which he will hang his body outside the gallery.

The powerful visual impact of Miljanovic’s work goes beyond the cliché of post-war Balkan art and his work has had an international appreciation. The artist takes as starting point of his reflection the reality that surrounds him but uses to create original works that can be even disturbing and touching for its capacity to unravel truths in a very direct, almost brutal, way.

Mladen Miljanovic was born in 1981 in Zenica, an industrial city in Bosnia-Herzegovina, 70 km north from Sarajevo, and graduated from the Academy of Art in Banja Luka. In 2007 Miljanovic receives the ZVONO price for best Bosnian young artist. Numerous international participations will follow, such as the Busan Biennal in South Korea in 2008, a show at Palazzo Forti in Verona, Italy, in 2009, the Museum Moderner Kunst Stiftung Ludwig Wien (MUMOK) in Wien in 2010 and the 53rd Belgrade October Salon in 2011.

The film Do you intend to lie to me? has been presented at Sarajevo Film Festival 2011. This work was conceived as an extreme gesture Miljanovic did as a gift to celebrate his colleague Veso Sovilj’s 30th anniversary of artistic career, which has been totally ignored by the Bosnian public opinion. The movie seeks to reveal the truth about the brutality of life, art and responsibility in post war Bosnia. Members of a special police unit stormed in a cafe, arrested a man and escorted him to a police station in handcuffs, while the entire operation was monitored from above by helicopters. An interrogation ensues. The action is proceeded without Veso’s knowledge about it. Details of the suspect’s life are revealed with 26 questions. The audience feels as if they are standing on the other side of a one-way mirror in the interrogation room. They can hear the suspect’s replies, and are offered a brief look at the lie detector results.

The photographic work Show By Your Hand Where do You Feel Pain is an intimate yet shocking dialogue documentation between a married couple. The husband, an ex soldier in the Bosnian army, is deaf and completely disabled (PTSP, the consequence of the last Yugoslavian war) and communicated with her wife through a written diary in which he expresses his most private and personal needs. These photos face us with somebody’s daily brutal reality, and they open to us an unpleasant imagination of somebody’s state of body.

In Good Night - State of Body, the artist urges us to reflect on the boundaries and the role of art. Can we accept a brutal action made in the name of art? How far can the artist push himself in the name of it?

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