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Museum of Contemporary Art

Ušće 10, blok 15, Belgrade
Working hours: from 10:00 to 18:00, Thursday from 10:00 to 22:00
The Museum is closed on Tuesdays
Admission fees
Individual visit - 300 rsd
Group visit - 200 rsd
Students, pensioners - 150 rsd
Free admission on Wednesdays/p>

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Salon of the Museum of Contemporary Art

14 Pariska St., Belgrade
Working hours: from 12:00 to 20:00, except Tuesdays
Admission is free of charge

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Gallery-Legacy of Milica Zorić & Rodoljub Čolaković

2 Rodoljuba Čolakovića St, Belgrade
Working hours: from 12:00 to 20:00, except Tuesdays
Admission is free of charge

Ljubomir Šimunić: Secret Life of the Belgrade Periphery

Programme | 21.12.2012















Ljubomir Šimunić: Secret Life of the Belgrade Periphery
Films and Photographs 1973-2012


Salon of the Museum of Contemporary Art, 14 Pariska street 
December 21, 2012 - February, 2013.

Curator: Dejan Sretenović

The Exhibition “Secret Life of the Belgrade Periphery. Films and Photographs 1973-2012” is a thematic retrospective that presents Ljubomir Šimunić’s selected experimental eight millimeter films, polaroids and black and white photographs that are, by their theme or content, oriented towards eroticism. A declared erotomaniac and voyeur, follower of the sexual revolution of the 1960s, Simunic has, like no other domestic artist, with continuity, intriguingly and provocatively, stylistically specific, developed the erotic discourse in art bringing it to the very border of the legitimate erotic culture. This means that he has formally adhered to the rule of the erotic code of representation, that resides on the premise of inexplicit depiction of sexual pleasure, but he has managed, through artful and winding motions in that space, to discover other faces of eros and contribute to a tactical shift, if not even to a revolution in artistic depiction of sexuality in this country. Like the great critic of innocent talk about sex Georges Bataille, he demonstrates a belief that eros is at work only when it is manifested as an offence or a subversion of law and order, in other words, only when it annuls the differences in taste that separate the sublime from banal, normal from perverse, aesthetic from obscene, etc. The syntagm “secret life of the Belgrade periphery” is not just an allusion to so-called “forbidden pleasures” that take place on a daily basis outside the realm of standardized and instrumentalized sexuality, but also a proclamation of the constitution of a quite personal, aesthetically refined erotic world that appeals to liberation of suppressed libido and sexual emancipation.

Ljubomir Simunić was born in Belgrade in 1942. He enters the Faculty of Dramatic Arts in 1971, when he also buys his first film camera and starts working on experimental film. At the Festival of Young Cinema in the French town of Hyères in 1979, he receives the critics’ Grand Prix for the film trilogy Pression, Gerdy the Wicked Witch and What Awaits Slavica in Life. At the prestigious festival in Thessaloniki (2009), a program entitled “Experimental Forum” was dedicated to his films.

He started engaging in photography in the 1970s, parallel with film, working with the camera Polaroid SX-70, which he was the first to use in Belgrade. The Polaroids, mostly of erotic character, were placed in black silk albums, and this first opus bore the title Silk Times. In the late 1970s, he begins working in the field of black and white photography, which results in the erotic cycles Secret Life of Belgrade Periphery, Belgrade Day and Night, Photo-Stories and Dirty Dreams. Photographs from these cycles were also placed in silk albums in whose pockets were deposited pieces of underwear (property of the model), vials of perfume and tapes with adequate music. These albums were never publicly exhibited, but they were available only to a small number of friends.

The work on the big cycle of photographs Family Album begins in 1980. This serial was never exhibited in its entirety, while one of its parts, done with soft-filter in the spirit of pictorialism, is dedicated to Alfred Stieglitz. The last cycle of photographs on negative color film carries the title In Search of the Lost Pictures of Childhood and it was done in the time of bombardment in 1999.

Working with digital technologies changed the character of Šimunić’s photographs and in this period, starting from the year 2000, emerge the cycles Search for the Legs of Hairdresser Nada, Vue de la fenetre (dedicated to Henri Matisse) and Psychodelict Stairway (dedicated to Alfred Hitchcock), as well as the series The Nights, The Adventure and The Eclipse, dedicated to the films of Michelangelo Antonioni that bear the same names.

Šimunić exhibited at numerous independent and collective exhibitions in the country and abroad and he is a winner of many praises and awards, among which is the Gold Medal of FIAP for 1996. He was a collaborator of the cult Belgrade magazine Izgled.


Ljubomir Šimunić: Secret Life of the Belgrade Periphery
Ljubomir Šimunić: Secret Life of the Belgrade Periphery
Ljubomir Šimunić: Secret Life of the Belgrade Periphery
Ljubomir Šimunić: Secret Life of the Belgrade Periphery
Ljubomir Šimunić: Secret Life of the Belgrade Periphery
Ljubomir Šimunić: Secret Life of the Belgrade Periphery
Ljubomir Šimunić: Secret Life of the Belgrade Periphery
Ljubomir Šimunić: Secret Life of the Belgrade Periphery
Ljubomir Šimunić: Secret Life of the Belgrade Periphery
Ljubomir Šimunić: Secret Life of the Belgrade Periphery
Ljubomir Šimunić: Secret Life of the Belgrade Periphery
Ljubomir Šimunić: Secret Life of the Belgrade Periphery