Leading art publisher Arts Help featured multidisciplinary artist Viktor Mitic in a new interview this week by Laura Thipphawong.

From the article: “The contrast of violence and beauty in art is a continuous source of inspiration for Mitic, whose multi-media artworks blend the visually stunning aesthetics with the jarringly destructive methods by which he finishes his canvases.” 

Serbian-born Viktor Mitic earned a BFA from the University of Toronto in 1995 with studies in art history at Sheridan College. He has exhibited his post-Pop inspired paintings, prints and colourful abstract sculptures at the Muramatsu Gallery in Tokyo, The Armory Show in NYC, Art Chicago and in Toronto. His work is held in corporate, private and public collections including the Beaverbrook Art Gallery and the Biggs Museum of American Art.

Mitic in the interview on his provocative bullet hole paintings: “The first time I exhibited one of these pieces, the ones with bullet holes, I didn't tell anybody how it was done. It was a secret, and then once someone figured it out then it was on the news and they started talking about it all day long. But for me it was a decorative piece, a decorative element that I wanted to add to the painting. Art or War is a question, but it can be a contrast at the same time. Because they're two different forces working simultaneously. There's no real black and white. It's one big gray area that we're dealing with." 

"At the end of the day, when I finish the painting, I might shoot it or I can run over it with a car, I can do whatever I want but it’s got to look good. I went to school for art and spent years training and I more or less know what I need to do in order to get the look I want, what elements in composition, and color combinations that I want to use to get something to stand out the way I want it to."

In Self Portrait (Selfie) at Oeno Gallery, Mitic utilizes a pop-inspired aesthetic with bold colour blocks and a simplified portraiture design, riffing on the ubiquitous selfie culture, comical filters, and more deeply, surveillance culture. The character's eyes are comically enlarged and glance dramatically upward to another set of eyes that extend from his head and appear to be watching from above. Strategically executed bullet holes pierce the canvas creating a tension between creation and destruction and ask the viewer to confront ideas surrounding the normalization and glorification of violence in contemporary culture.

The interview ‘Creation, Destruction, and the Art of Viktor Mitic’ is live now on Arts Help. Read the full article, or explore more artworks by Mitic currently at Oeno Gallery.

Featured: Self Portrait (Selfie) by Viktor Mitic, 2020, Acrylic and archival pigment on canvas, 24 × 30 inches

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