Knez Mihailova Street

Milo Milunović1938

The Pavle Beljanski Memorial Collection

The Pavle Beljanski Memorial Collection

The painter devoted close attention to landscapes and townscapes from the very beginning of his career. He never invented the sceneries. He used to observe and paint his surroundings – Malakoff, Saint-Tropez and landscapes from the south of France, and especially Prčanj, the town where he would most frequently go to during the summer. Upon returning to Belgrade he also observed and painted his surroundings. Milunović viewed Knez Mihajlova Street from Kalemegdan, from above, namely from the balcony of the Academy of Fine Arts, at the same time displacing the center of the perspective sideways in order to achieve a characteristic intimistic view. The detail of an open window is also intimistic, contrasted with the dead and impersonal façades of the city. The painter’s attention was, however, primarily drawn to the contours and silhouettes of the buildings which are lined up like a series of regular geometrical forms. Their outlines, drawn in a darker tone, merge rhythmically, while the buildings themselves were clad by the painter in a violet-gray gamut. Milunović’s Knez Mihailova Street was painted in the afternoon hours, which is shown by the violet-gray shadows. By accentuating them, it was as if he had returned to the beginning of his career (Street, 1916/17), and he also divided the scene into an intensely lit part and a dark one. The painter filled the dark strip of the shadows along the façades on the right side with figures of passers-by, barely suggested with black brushstrokes, similarly to Claude Monet, who did this six and a half decades before (1873) in his painting Boulevard des Capucines by depicting the passers-by as captured by the inaccurate lens of a nineteenth-century camera. The painting was first exhibited at the Twelfth Spring Exhibition in Belgrade where it was singled out in a review by the critic Todor Manojlović.

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  • Title: Knez Mihailova Street
  • Creator: Milo Milunović
  • Date Created: 1938
  • Signatures, Inscriptions and Markings: signed in the bottom right corner: M. Milunovic
  • Provenance: The painting Knez Mihailova Street was among 185 works of art that Pavle Beljanski donated to the nation in 1957.
  • Physical Dimensions: w81 x h100.5 cm
  • Exhibition History: 1945 - City Museum and Library, Sombor; 1952 - Belgrade City Museum; since 1961 - permanent exhibition of The Pavle Beljanski Memorial Collection; 1997 - Gallery of Serbian Academy of Sciences and Arts, Belgrade; 2003 - the exhibition Pavle Beljanski's Collection Here and Abroad, The Pavle Beljanski Memorial Collection; 2010 - the exhibition Pavle Beljanski - Friend of Artists: Milo Milunović; 2011 - the exhibition The Collection of Pavle Beljanski: Back in Belgrade, Gallery of the Military Club, Belgrade
  • Type: Oil on Canvas
  • Rights: The Pavle Beljanski Memorial Collection, The Pavle Beljanski Memorial Collection
  • External Link: http://www.pavle-beljanski.museum/en/artwork.php?artwork=91
  • Medium: Oil on Canvas

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