Descent. Original color lithograph, 1989. Edition of 90 signed and numbered impressions on Arches paper.
Vladimir Veličković was one of the most prominent Serbian artists of our time, and also well known at the International art scene. For a short period of time he lived in Zagreb, Croatia where he worked as an assistant in Krsto Hegedušić’s workshop. In 1966 he moved to Paris, where he still resides and works. The year before, he received the “Biennale des Jeunes” prize in Paris. Ever since 1951, when his creative activity as an artist prevailed, he has exhibited in many countries across Europe and the US. In 1985, he was also elected as a member of the Serbian Academy of Sciences and Arts. In addition to the numerous awards won throughout his career, one of the more prominent one is the Commandeur dans l’ordre des Arts et des Lettres, the highest French award in the field of culture and art. The beheaded human being, pierced bodies and types of torture form the central themes of his work during the 1970s. In the years after 1980 the return to colors once again gains in significance. Visconti Fine Art has collaborated with Velickovic since the early 1970s. The first collaboration was the Edition published by Visconti Fin Art Kolizej in 1973 titled “5 pieces”, a series of silkscreen and collages of 5 different motifs. Visconti Fine Art also represented Vladimir Veličković throughout the years at various art fairs across Europe. Furthermore, a unique cultural project called SPORT AND ART was initiated in 1991 between Fascination “The Gallery of Modern Art” in Switzerland and Visconti Fine Art. Five internationally renowned artists-Valerio Adami (Italy), Jean-Michel Folon (France), Jiri Kolar (Chech Republic), James Rosenquist (USA) and Vladimir Veličković (France/Serbia) have created a limited edition of artworks especially for SPORT AND ART.
Veličković’s art is a projection of an extreme vision of tragic death, as well as existential spasm and escape. Accompanied by poetics of horror, his artworks show his fascination with movement in almost all forms which force not just the human, but the whole world to push forward despite all these disasters and dying. There is a depiction of fascination with motion of a Sisyphean uselessness of persistent motion, blind to obstacles and dangers. There is some kind of balance – the name of composition makes us imagine the opposite picture that we actually see in this graphic. Descent can be a synonym for death, but the climb of this strong man is a symbolic representation of living, where one without the other could not exist. The number of the same or similar compositions is telling about Veličković’s preoccupation with these philosophical themes that have tormented many for centuries.