Nikola Kusovac,
Art historian
IN THE SPIRIT OF TRADITION

Ljiljana Nikolic,
Art Historian,
Fine Art Critic
THE FIRST INTERNATIONAL COLONY OF CERAMICS

Biljana Djordjević-Bogdanović, archaeologist
ON ZLAKUSA POTTERY AND ITS SIGNIFIANCE
FOR ETHNOLOGICAL AND ARCHEOLOGICAL RESEARCH

 

Sofija BunardzicColony Director
Sofija Bunardzic
academic painter - ceramist
independant artist

DEAR COLLEAGUES ARTISTS
AND ALL FRIENDS
OF ART

The village of Zlakusa, situated not far from Uzice would not be different than many other villages in our country if it is not for a detail which singles it out. Households in Zlakusa have been producing ceramics (pottery) in an old, traditional way, for more than 300 years. The technological process of ceramics manufacturing which is very similar to a prehistoric one is also applied today and it is exceptionally interesting.

15 years ago, when I for the first time encountered the pottery products from Zlakusa I realized all the richness and cultual value of such a way of ceramics manufacturing. To allow this old, traditional handicraft fade away, would be an unforgivable sin towards us, to world and especially to future generations.

It is difficult to remain indifferent in this moment and not to feel pride in front of the fact that The First International Colony of Fine Art Ceramics in Zlakusa starts its living. By organizing the colony of ceramics, artists, art historians and archaeologists have been given a chance to get to know old, traditional materials, tools and method of making objects of clay and on the other hand, by enetering new ideas, modern trends and poetics, to obtain a union of old, authentic and new, contemporary ceramics.

All hard work, efforts and difficulties which organization of such a happening demands seem insignificant to me compared to satisfaction I feel because of successful work of the colony.

In front of you there is a part of exhibits born in The First International Colony of Fine Art Ceramics "Zlakusa 96". About 200 works have been produced, the part of which you will have an opportunity to see at the exhibitions all over the country.

Because of exceptional importance which this event has for Yugoslav culture and therefore for our region as well, and for the possibility of introducing world publicity with some of the last handicraftsmen - keepers of an ancient tradition, who are a living link of this region with a far past and preservation of such a wealth, once again I have to emphasize an enormous gratitude, on my personal behalf and on behalf of ULUU to The Municipality of Uzice, The Ministry of Culture of the Republic of Serbia, The Ministry of Science and Technology of the Republic of Serbia, The Serbian Academy of Sciences and Arts, The Monument Museum "Kadinjaca", hosts in Zlakusa whithout whose support this colony would not exist. Then I would like to express my gratitude to the colleagues artists, without their presence the colony would lose sence, and to many sponsors, without whose help the whole happening would have been much more modest.

And one great thanks to all of you who helped to carry out the idea and concept of the project of The International Colony of Fine Art Ceramics "Zlakusa", hoping it will become a traditional one.