17 May 2019 - An exhibition of drawings by Uroš Tošković, a homage to one of the most prominent Montenegrin artists, will be symbolically opened at the Gayo Gallery in Porto Montenegro on Tuesday, May 21 at 8 pm.
Uroš Tošković was a Montenegrin and Yugoslav painter and draftsman. Tošković is considered one of the world's best painters of the 20th century according to many art critics from Europe and beyond.
Uroš Tošković was born in a low-income family in the village of Pelev Brijeg, and in the Bratonožići region of Montenegro, which was then part of the Kingdom of Yugoslavia. After moving to Cetinje, Tošković enrolled in the Art School, which was later transferred to Herceg Novi, where he graduated in 1952, in the class led by Petar Lubarda and Milo Milunović. Then he moved to Belgrade, where he graduated from the Academy of Fine Arts in 1956, in the class mentored by Marko Čelebonović. During the studies in Belgrade, Tošković partnered with Dado Đurić, Olja Ivanjicki and others, forming the alternative artist group Mediala in 1953.
In 1956, he moved to Paris, after receiving a French government scholarship for the École des Beaux-Arts, where he graduated under the mentorship of Maurice Brianchon. He lived and worked in Paris until 1976, leading an ascetic and bohemian lifestyle, occasionally living like a vagabond. In 1976, he moved from Paris to Belgrade, and since 1996 he has resided in the Montenegrin coastal town of Bar. He gained recognition in his homeland, and in 1987 he received the 13th July Award, the highest civil award issued by the Government of Montenegro. Tošković died on 3 March 2019 at the age of 86.
As journalist Jelena Kontić reports, his drawings won over the Paris art critics and painters, who mostly had the opinion that Uroš Tošković was the best graphic artist in the world. For 20 years, he lived in Paris, where he met the greatest artists at the time, such as Picasso, Dali, Sartre, and Ionesco. It is an anecdote that Picasso wanted to buy one of his drawings, but Tošković replied: "I am too expensive for you".
Art historian and art critic Anastazija Miranović described Uroš Tošković as the "incomprehensible, unadapted, frightening creator, and this is shown in his work. Uroš does not copy anyone with his drawings, paintings, sculptures, installations. His words, opinions, behaviors are his own. He is the way he is, and that is his freedom, creative and human freedom. This freedom is his choice as much as his destiny."