Lazo Plavevski: On Thin Ice

Museum of Contemporary Art Skopje

16. April – 25. May 2022

This exhibition shows Lazo Plavevski’s work created in the last seven years. It is a collection of cartoons which he has had continuously published on the Okno web portal since 2015, while their realization was prompted by the crisis in which our country found itself as a result of undemocratic governance practices by government structures (illegal wiretapping, Skopje 2014, electoral manipulations, partisanship in all areas of public life). During this period, over 500 cartoons were published (starting from the first four cartoons published in March 2015, all the way to the last series of 16 cartoons entitled On Thin Ice! published in January 2022), which present the wo(ea)rrisome situation in the “Macedonian Dark Vilayet”, and also the state of affairs in which we find ourselves as a result of the suspension of the positive benefits and utopian assumptions of modernity.

These cartoons were published in series and designed as specific thematic units. In them, the author comments and dissects political and social developments in the country, covering a wide range of topics, from the wiretapping scandal, through the populism, power, capital, identity, revolutionary zeal, the pandemic, up to a series of “incidents” related to certain life situations and paradoxes.

This exhibition, which will present about 200 original and digital prints of cartoons, is an extraordinary opportunity not only to see the creative engagement of Lazo Plavevski in the area of cartoons, where he takes a prominent and important position, but also to encourage and revive the interest in this art medium, which has almost been brought to the brink of its own disappearance in recent decades.

The curator of this exhibition is Ljiljana Nedelkovska.

Lazo Plavevski (Skopje, 1954) is a cartoonist, art historian, curator, art critic. Until 2021, he worked as a curator/curator advisor at the Skopje City Museum. As a curator he has organized a large number of solo and group exhibitions, while as a cartoonist he has realized several solo projects and participated in a number of group exhibitions. From 1995 to 2009, he was a regular associate and editorial board member of the visual arts magazine “The Big Glass”, published by the Skopje Museum of Contemporary Art.

Since 1970, he has had cartoons published in a number of magazines at home and abroad. In 1976, he received the GRAND PRIX award at the World Gallery of Cartoons in Skopje.

In 1995, he had his “Mute Book / Cartoons 1990 – 1993” published, while in 2001, together with Miroslav Grchev, he had the book “Cards” published. In the form of a catalog / book, the project “Unusable Notes” was published in 2009, and in 2016, his e-book “The Dark Vilayet Recitative” was published on the Okno portal.