Jelena Micić / MOLERAJ

Jelena Micić / MOLERAJ
8.11. – 6.12.2019
/ vernisáž: 8.11.2019, 18:00

The installation is gathered around a set of works thematizing different aspects of ongoing color investigation. The exhibition gathers around an in-situ wall painting based on a wordplay depicting (in)distinguishable roles in the act of painting. Color sampling followed by pigment extraction outside and within the living space maps the environmental appearances of color. The discrepancy between digital and the color used in painting invites to comparison and visual differentiation, awakening visitor’s color sensitivity, while posing the question of a ‚closer look‘ as a revealing tool.

Jelena Micić (1986 in Knjaževac, Serbia) lives and works in Vienna.

Student at the Academy of Fine Arts Vienna in the Textual sculpture class (Heimo Zobernig). MA in Philosophy and Graduated philologist of Scandinavian languages University of Belgrade. In 2018 receives Ö1 Talentestipendium Bildende Kunst and kültür gemma! Fellowship in IG Bildende Kunst, Vienna. Founder of the informal group UMETNIK*.

This project is supported using public funding by the Slovak Arts Council which is also the main partner in 2019.



Výstavný projekt Jeleny Micić – Moleraj(maliarstvo) predstaví diela tematizujúce rôzne aspekty autorkinho dlhodobého výskumu pojmu farby. Výstava zahŕňa site-specific nástennú maľbu (realizovanú remeselníkom vyškoleným v tejto oblasti), ktorá sa pohráva so samotnou definíciou maliarstva. Micić ďalej predstavísériu farebných vzorkovníkov ktoré vznikajú extrakciou pigmentov nachádzajúcich sa v bežnom domácom prostredí (v interiéri aj v exteriéri). Autorka upozorňuje na rozdiely medzi digitálnou reprezentáciou farby a jej „skutočnou“ podobou použitou v maľbe; prebúdza farebnú citlivosť a ostražitosť diváka a zároveň skúma našu schopnosť rozlišovať farbu prostredníctvom pozorného dívania sa.

Jelena Micić (1986, Knjaževac, Srbsko) žije a pracuje vo Viedni. V súčasnosti študuje na Akadémii výtvarných umení vo Viedni v ateliéri Textual sculpture class pod vedením Heimo Zoberniga. Je absolventkou magisterského štúdia odboru filológie škandinávskych jazykov na Univerzite v Belehrade. V r. 2018 získala štipendium Ö1 Talentestipendium Bildende Kunst a kültür gemma!. Micić je členkou IG Bildende Kunst, Viedeň a zakladateľkou neformálnej skupiny UMETNIK *.

Výstavný program galérie Temporary Parapet v roku 2019 z verejných zdrojov podporil Fond na podporu umenia. Fond je hlavným partnerom projektu.

Who is it living in Mary’s room?

MOLERAJ is an alternate treatment of the phenomenological and epistemological position of the artist, and therefore the observer. The alleged gap is actually constantly intertwining. During several years of examining various aspects of color, Jelena thematizes, through different materials and methodologies, the quality and discrimination of color, thus the foluresent purple becomes her discernability. This and not that. This kind of methodological approach may not even be visible to the untrained eye, or perhaps even may seem impossible for a certain percentage of the population who, due to biological configuration,[1] simply cannot notice the subtle differences that the author persists on. Is then the locus of the exhibition titled MOLERAJ on the conceptual or visual aspects? A question that Jelena does not give a clear answer to or suggests a hint by the way the work Untitled was constituted, as well as her attempt to question the role of the artist in the production of the work. Namely, the choice of the characteristic color applied to the wall by the hired painter. If one accepts the work as artistic, the old question of authorship is raised. If she herself is the author, then the romantic act of craftsmanship, brush strokes and tinting are not what makes the work. In that case, the focus is on the question of gratification, which goes along the quality of the color chosen as such. Who can actually „see“ the work if not all the information is available? What is the available information? How knowledge and context actually affect our perception is best illustrated by Frank Jackson’s thought experiment with Mary the Neuroscientist, who has spent her entire life studying color from a neurophysiological standpoint. She knows which parts of the brain are activated when color is perceived, what is the exact wavelength of the neon purple she is studying, and when she should use the word „neon purple“ in conversation or text. However, Mary spent her entire life in the Laboratory, which is black and white. Regardless of the fact that Mary „knows everything“ about the physical characteristics and neural correlates of neon purple, the question is whether she would learn something new when she exits laboratory and directly faces the very color. If Jelena’s answer to the question is positive, then her art lies in the visual, in the other case the work is leaning on and is being contextualized towards the conceptual artistic practice. The work of the explosive title Bojne probe thematizes the presence or absence of the artist, and so the key part of the work is not the decision itself, but the brushstroke, which is nevertheless systematically applied to the canvas in an attempt to bring into visibility the individual behind the act.

The language game that Jelena is inclined to also in earlier works is reflected in the use of the term[2] in the title of the exhibition. The ambiguity in German and English indicates the indistinguishable meaning of the word „painter,“ in one sense as „the artist who paints paintings“ and in the other, „the person whose job it is to paint walls.“ In addition to linguistic ontological, there is no doubt about the economic implications of exploring this ambiguity.  Of course, when it comes to the taboos of money, employment and payment in the field of contemporary art, it is necessary to mention knowledge as the primary source of valorisation, returning „work“ to the cognitive aspect and the question of power. Who can „see“ this art is a controversial issue with political implications and is reflected in distinction, elitism vs populism as well as populism vs democratisation. Such divisions involving aspects of „knowledge“ and the question „who may know“ play a key role in the production of art in a time of cognitive capitalism.

Žarko Aleksić

[1] Tetrachromacy (Super Vision) is a rare genetic mutation where 12% women* have four types of cone cells enabling some of them to see up to 9 million more colors.

[2] Der Maler (German); maliar (Slovak).