The invitation caught my attention with the words 'an exhibition of abstract, multi-dimensional paintings'. Not knowing exactly what that meant, curiosity demanded to be satisfied so it was a trip to town. The effort proved to be an exciting and mind broadening experience. The Space Between is a fascinating place to explore.
Milunovic's work involves the process of layering acrylic paint, synthetic polymer resin and aluminium foil on stretched canvas. The result provides a collection of intriguing visual experiences that prove to be as complex or simplistic as the viewer chooses. These large abstract works refer to the process and the power of creation, natural and industrial, in art and life. Each exhibit demands attention and when it catches the eye, rewards us with multiple perceptions of depth and a collection of visual contradictions.
Employing only black and white on metre square surfaces, Milunovic's work emits either a sense of chaos or serenity, and sometimes both at once. The viewer travels deep into the painting stepping through layers of transparent resin, around swirling painted marks, beyond suspended rectilinear pieces of alfoil, and on to infinity. Some works invite us to swim in large calm areas of warm white medium while others hold us back as we are confronted by our own reflection or fear being drowned in the silky blackness. All the while, potent mark making suggests calligraphy or Freudian concepts or barriers to be overcome or pathways to Nirvana. It's all in the eye of the beholder.
The paintings are numbered rather then titled allowing each viewer to find what they want or need in the work. I found power and energy in Painting #15 and a peaceful Zen garden in Painting #21. But it was Painting #13, which consists of some seven layers, that proved most curious as it offered so much to contemplate. While moving in front of the work I glimpsed my reflection in the broad black brush marks effectively placing me in the composition. A variety of spontaneous opaque marks in shades of grey and clean white swirled over and under each other on different levels separated by layers of transparent resin. Was I walking through the bush at night, heading toward the distant pale mist at the centre of the square canvas, or was I observing the creation of the universe? Curiouser and curiouser, but highly satisfying.
Milunovic presents a powerful display of the creative act and the resulting objects are as exciting as the process.
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