Gligor Stefanov

Gligor Stefanov is a representative of the middle generation of Macedonian artists, who now living in Canada. He graduated at the Belgrade Art Academy where he also received his M.A. He has had 18 one-man exhibitions in Skopje, Belgrade, Zagreb, Dublin, London and Venice. He has taken part in more than 100 important group exhibitions in Zagreb, Belgrade, Sarajevo, Graz, Prague, Athens, Toulon, Dresden, Budapest, etc. He has been awarded a number of prizes, one of which is the award of the Museum of Contemporary Art, Skopje. From the very beginning of his artistic activity, Stefanov abandoned medial and stylistic concreteness. Following the rhythm of postmodernism, he has emphatically demonstrated his affiliation to his own spiritual, geographic and cultural environment. The mystical love and cultic attitude towards the natural materials (straw, jute, cotton, grass, hay, wood, terra-cotta) was an attempt to their pure state of existence (structure, color, smell, density, texture, warmth). Stefanov’s first sculptures-objects lay within the context of the geo-ethnographic sensibility of the Macedonian environment: they had a certain visual, but not spiritual closeness to neodadaism or arte povera. In the subsequent development stage, the artist concentrated on questions associated with space, using it as a material for building unusual linear forms. Retaining his affinity for natural materials, at his one-man exhibition in Belgrade (1985) he gave his works clearly metaphoric and symbolic characteristics, which by their names (Kites) pointed to his desire to move away from reality. Moving in England in 1988,Stefanov demonstrated his intention to enter metaphysical sphere. His object/environmental sculptures showing angels of the highest order in angelic hierarchy SERAPHIM, CHERUBIM AND THRONE) were executed in straw as the primary “sculptor’s” material. Stefanov attempted to give a concrete artistic body to the most abstract visions from the Old and New Testaments through an allegory of light (gold, sun, angel). His project for the 45th Venice Biennale is a kind of a liturgical act under the sky as a dome, in the presence of “Seraphim” and “Cherubim”.