September 4, 2020 - "Whisper" - is the name of the multimedia exhibition of the versatile artist Ljiljana Petrovic, which will be opened on Sunday, September 6, at 8 pm in the Church of St. Paul in the Old Town of Kotor. The audience will be presented with costumes and digital works inspired by the sacrifice and life of Blessed Ozana Kotorska, whose hermitage is located in the complex of the Church of St. Paul. It is an exceptional gallery space towards which, as she pointed out, the artist felt a special responsibility.
"The exhibition Whisper is another project that I am working on at the invitation of Municipal Public Institution "Museums Kotor". Two years ago, my colleague Aleksandar Kostic and I prepared the exhibition "Cargo," which was very well received. This project is inspired primarily by Blessed Ozan. That was the starting point, which I, of course, expanded, so the exhibition is conceptual. It is exhibited in an exciting space, sacred, and at the same time artistic," says the artist, who regularly exhibits stage costumes, treating them as a work of stage-related art.
"Their real life is on the stage. But if you process it well, the costume can be exhibited and get some new context if it is in the gallery. I regularly exhibit my costumes, so do my students, and we always try to adhere to high aesthetic standards. These costumes are not on the stage now, but they are very close, and every detail must be seen to properly. I hope to succeed this time as well. We are only just setting up the exhibition," modestly points out Ljiljana Petrović, who, in addition to her artistic career in theater and film, also works as a stage costume professor at the Faculty of Applied Arts in Belgrade.
She is the creator of costumes for numerous feature films and 150 theater performances by almost all the leading theaters in Belgrade and national theaters in Serbia. She has worked on costumes for TV dramas, short and animated films, and more than 350 projects in advertising.
"Guided by experience, the versatile artist Ljiljana Petrović has matched the miraculous ambiance of the Church of St. Paul in the Old Town of Kotor with her multimedia exhibition Whisper. In this lighthouse of beauty and sacredness, where the legend of the Blessed Ozana of Kotor lives, the author boldly set out to conquer an imposing space, familiar to most observers, but static and closed. As a costume designer, she is close to free movement through various media and artistic and non-artistic dimensions," reads the announcement for the exhibition "Whisper", signed by Suzana Sudar.
Within an exciting multimedia approach, the costumes, which will not be exhibited on tailor's mannequins but freely placed in space, will be complemented by video projections and a soundtrack that simulates the play of waves and wind. Thus Whisper is bringing the movement of the theater to the gallery. And the sanctity of the exhibition space opens up to the audience, making them feel like an active participant in the artist's creative process.
"The stage costume is multi-layered. In addition to having a structure, it also has a multiplicity of meanings. Since I have been dealing with film the most lately, engaged as a costume designer in the production of feature films, I decided to give my costumes even more layering. I made a few video projections, and those video works were projected directly onto the costumes. With their content and poetics, those videos have a certain meaning. Just as the colors of the costumes I chose for this setting have symbolism, and their shape and form." Ljiljana Petrović additionally sparks our imagination, noting that the exhibition has an audio component - the tone that will be broadcast simulates a quiet game of waves and wind.
Blessed Ozana, as an inspiration - and the artist points out that she was not previously acquainted with her character and work.
"Don Niko Luković's book "Blessed Ozana of Kotor" came to me through the Kotor Museum curator, Biserka Milić. She also showed me the Church of St. Paul's space, prompting me to think about the interesting project we are now putting in place. It was very interesting for me and my colleagues with whom I worked on the exhibition "Cargo". We jointly started the project on the topic of sacrifice, about what a person is ready to do because of higher goals and the community's interests. In the end, we decided to do two different exhibitions. Whisper is one of them, and a colleague's exhibition is yet to come. Blessed Ozana is the starting point, with her light, peace, truth, the historical context of her sacrifice. It was exciting to try to translate all this into a visual language, metaphorical, which has its own messages. I hope I have succeeded. "
The exhibition "Whisper" in St. Paul's church will be opened on Sunday, September 6, and the audience will have the opportunity to visit it until November 7, 2020.