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Zoran Music, Untitled (unfinished)

After the horrors of the Second World War, where the Slovenian artist Zoran Mušič was imprisoned in the Dachau concentration camp, he married the Venetian
artist Ida Cadorin-Barbarigo in 1945. Both artists subsequently went in search of solitude, stillness, for their art. When they moved to Paris, they even lived apart from each other, but met daily. Mušič also met regularly with Alberto Giacometti – when they saw each other, they often shared time in silence.

It is fascinating to compare the oeuvres of Zoran and Ida, and see where there are similarities, or perhaps even how one influenced the other. It is also interesting to see how Mušič portrayed his wife, often as if she were some sort of diffuse shadow in the sky, or a drawn breath against a dark background. From the early 1980s onward, Mušič gave himself a place in the paintings – as an author, but also as a companion.

Several sketches show how he thought about their positions in relation to each other, in a tranquil, timeless dimension. This unfinished work is the last in the series, just before the death of the artist, who was still considering whether to depict himself from the back or the side. It is also clear how the artist thought about the position of the hands; hands that, as often in Mušič’s portraits, seemed to lead a life of their own, painted in a musical rhythm.

Object information

Charcoal on canvas
130 x 195 cm
Collection of Ida Barbarigo, Venice.

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