basic concept

Authors: Gordana Novakovic and Marjan Sijanec
Gordana Novakovic (paintings, drawings, video)
Music: Marjan Sijanec
Piano: Dragomir Stanojevic
Camera: Aleksandar Zlatanovic
Parallel Worlds, videotape, 1989
Betacam SP, PAL, Duration: 11 min.

We are living in a time when the borders between the spheres of action of a human mind are disappearing. The spheres interpenetrate each other. Theoretical physics, at a certain point, become philosophy, philosophy "fades into" metaphysics. Visual arts, owing to computers, enter domains of electronic and science in general. Art, using new technologies, changes in accordance with altered human environments. We are bombarded, simultaneously, completely accustomed to this type of "future shock". The result is a new aesthetic, but that does not mean that this new aesthetic has anything to do with superficial "mass culture". On the contrary, mixed media, by using the entire age-old cultural inheritance in and around us, offer artists numerous possibilities to express their ideas in deeper and more complex ways. Among newer forms of expression multimedia installations and environments are the most widespread. Both have a definite substance, which can never be exhausted by simple sensual impressions.

Both require a greater effort by the observers in the search for the expounded idea.
Information offered to us by physics, information that most of us, cannot probably comprehend, leads to the theological debates of Gnostics and Agnostics, to Metaphysics. We find ourselves, once again, in a world of poetry, beyond reality, a world which is known to us only through our imperfect senses. And even the worlds we imagine with absolute freedom are created only within the framework of our human values.

These particular installations, as a project, consist of the presentation of an idea in different media. Depending upon circumstances and needs, the project can vary in composition, from a regular exhibition of paintings to a multimedia performance.
The uniqueness of this project is in the way in it’s complexity is achieved. While installation usually consists of elements, which cannot exist autonomously as bearers of particular ideas, in this case every single element is a complete work of art which communicates itself and also, in interaction with other segments, it produces more complex impressions.

The basic elements for the construction of this project are large format easel paintings consisting of combinations of traditional oil painting techniques and computer-generated segments representing a chosen mathematical model of the painted form.

This cycle of paintings is concerned with man and his understanding of his environment, an environment containing events either too small or too large to be comprehended by our senses, inaccessible even to our most precise instruments, events about which our knowledge is based only upon mathematically proven theories, or upon the traces of their existence which we are able to perceive.

Music, an element of equal significance in this project, uses a procedure, which is, in essence, similar to one used in the visual part. It can exist autonomously, or as part of a much more complex whole.

The paintings consists of surfaces painted by brush, in the traditional manner and of computer generated patterns. Some of the musical segments are performed live by a pianist who, being present, makes observers aware of their own presence in the "real time" of the creation. of an artwork but within strictly defined and controlled conditions.

The composer uses the computer in the process of composing music as well as while performing it. Musical segments represent the composer’s impression of each particular painting, but it is, as well, a separate artwork. Each painting represents a level of understanding of the basic idea, and each painting can exist separately too. Therefore, it is possible to present paintings in a certain order following the composer’s musical idea, and also possible to rearrange the musical part, by presenting the selected paintings in a different order, thus producing a structure of unusual form and content, resembling a cartoon-strip.

The concept of the video, in this case, relies primarily upon the aesthetics of classical animated film. With it’s abstract content this concept emphasizes music as a higher dimension.

As far as form and technology are concerned, experiences from pop music video spots are and will be used as a form of aesthetics present in our everyday life. From the musical point of view this is a contemporary presentation of classical music that uses paintings for visualization, as the starting point for the music. In moments of contemplation visions of inconceivable and uncharted space are formed. Space consisting of quarks, photons, temporal levels, particles of matter carrying remembrances of the Big Bang. There is an awareness of that even the smallest events in space/time cause the most colossal cosmic changes. There is a feeling of togetherness with cosmic pulsation, togetherness with the Universe that is simultaneously both infinite and finite.

Form of the perfomance is based on the projections of the silent film. In the ambience of the Gordana Novakovic’s paintings, the video projection is being conducted. The pianist is improvising according to the pre-recorded tape music, thus giving additional dimension of the live sound.

Gordana Novakovic, 1989

"Parallel Worlds", Exhibition of paintings and drawings with computer music, Zemun Art Gallery, Belgrade, 1989
music by Marjan Sijanec
paintings by Gordana Novakovic

Exhibition/performance "Parallel Worlds" incorporating live piano and computer music, video and paintings , ULUS Gallery. Belgrade 1990
composer Marjan Sijanec
piano Dragomir Stanojevic
paintings, performance and video by Gordana Novakovic

"Parallel Worlds", performance works of five international artists, SKUC Gallery, LJubljana, Slovenia, 1993
piano Dragomir Stanojevic computer music Marjan Sijanec
performance, video and drawings by Gordana Novakovic