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Životin Nikolić


Životin Nikolić, Apiary, 2000, oil on canvas, 60 x 60 cm, MNMA




Catalogue and online exhibition


Životin Nikolić – Half a century of doing painting

November and December 2020



As part of the edition launched by the Museum of Naive and Marginal Art in order to mark significant anniversaries, artists who have completed half a century of continuous creation in the previous period were first presented. After the bilingual catalogs of Ilija Filipović, Dobrosav Milojević and Slobodan Živanović, in November 2020, the catalog of Životin Nikolić was printed (text, biography, list of exhibitions: Ivana Jovanović, senior curator of MNMU).



Among significant naïve authors who have found the wealth of their subject maters in homeland landscapes, scenes, everyday life and customs, Životin Nikolić stands out with his strong individualism and expressive intensity of artistic experience. After more than half a century of devoted artistic work, the oeuvre of this authentic autodidact is recognised as entirely specific blend of traditional and contemporary elements.
He was born in Jagodina on 18 July 1953. He stepped on artistic scene at the end of the eight decade of the last century, at the time when Yugoslav naïve art experienced its full expansion and recognition. Nikolić began doing drawing in 1968, and sometime later he began displaying his works. Soon, without notable initial digressions he created recognisable artistic language that was to mark his whole oeuvre. In the author’s dedicated efforts to embody his genuine and deep experience of brilliant world of his homeland, in luxurious and dazzling fullness of various aromas, visual sensations, colours, feelings and reflexions, significant artistic treasure came into being. Nikolić’s permanent instinctive need for artistic expression is manifested not only through direct pictorial expression, but also through significant range of exhibiting activities, in the country and abroad. He was awarded many prizes and recognitions among which the most significant are: Gold Medal for unselfish, devoted and long work and creative contribution to dissemination of culture, Cultural and Educational Community of Serbia, Belgrade (1996, 2001, 2005), and Special Recognition for the Exhibited Works at the Tenth Biennial of Naïve and Marginal Art, Museum of Naïve and Marginal Art, Jagodina (2001).

The online exhibition Životin Nikolić – Half a century of doing painting was presented in December 2020 on the profiles of MNMU within the online platform Facebook and Instagram.


Životin Nikolić, Sun Prunes Golden Branches of Ash, 1973, oil on canvas, 45 x 36 cm, MNMA


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