Goranka Matić was born in Maribor, Slovenia, in 1949. She graduated in art history from the Faculty of Philosophy in Belgrade in 1975. She has worked as a photographer since 1980. During that period, she was especially active in the area of rock music photography and produced record covers for some of the most well-known rock bands in the region. Her pictures were published in the magazines Džuboks, Start, Svjet, Polet, Omladinski novine, Dugi, Liberation and Delo. From 1986, she began to exhibit her photographs in Yugoslavia and abroad. In the course of her long artistic career, she has taken part in numerous group exhibitions and solo shows. She was photo editor for the weekly ‘Vreme’ and the newspaper ‘Politika’, and since 2010 was employed in the Art department at the public broadcaster Radio and Television of Serbia. She taught photojournalism at the Faculty of Political Sciences in Belgrade for eight years. She has been a member of the Serbian artists’ and designers’ association ULUPUDS since 1986. Goranka Matić has won several awards, among them the ‘October Salon’ (Oktobarski salon) prize in 1989, ‘Conquest of Freedom’ (Osvajanje slobode) in 2002 and the ‘Politika Prize’ (Politikine nagrade) in 2004. She has published her photographs in the books ‘Days of Pain and Pride’ (1995) and ‘Ten Years of Opposition: Citizens of Serbia for Democracy and an Open Society’ (2001).
- Belgrade, Serbia
- Budapest, Hungary
Hans Mattis-Teutsch (also known as János Mattis-Teutsch; born 13 August 1884 in Braşov/Brassó, then part of Austria-Hungary – died 17 March 1960 in Braşov) was a painter, illustrator, sculptor, and art theoretician of German and Hungarian origin, who was involved in different avant-garde movements throughout Europe in the first half of the 20th century. Because he became known initially as part of the Hungarian and German avant-garde, and after 1918 the Romanian avant-garde, Mattis-Teutsch has been claimed by Hungarian, German and Romanian artistic milieus alike. However, his work transcends ethnic boundaries. He was part of various artistic movements and trends in Hungary, Romania, Germany, and France, being the embodiment of the transnational nature of the European avant-garde.
Hans Mattis-Teutsch was born into an ethnically mixed family. His father – János Máttis – was Hungarian, his mother – Josephina (born Schneider) – was Transylvanian Saxon. After his father’s untimely death, his mother married Friedrich-Karl Teutsch, who legally adopted the future painter, and made him his heir. This explains the compound name, Mattis-Teutsch, which he took later. Hans Mattis-Teutsch trained as an artist in Braşov, where he was a student of the wood-carving section of the industrial technical school until 1901. Subsequently, he studied for a year at the Hungarian Royal Institute of Arts and Crafts in Budapest. Between 1902 and 1905, he attended the classes of the Royal BavarianAcademy of Fine Arts in Munich (Die Königlich Bayerische Akademie der bildenden Künste). From Munich Mattis-Teutsch went to Paris, where he remained until 1908. Here he experienced the effervescence of the modernist movements that spread in the French capital at the beginning of the twentieth century. In 1909, Mattis-Teutsch settled in Brașov, where he became a teacher at a technical school. He continued to travel and to collaborate with various avant-garde groups in Europe.
After the time spent in Paris, he focused on German and Hungarian art. In Germany he collaborated with the art groups Die Brücke and later with Der Sturm, adopting expressionism (Mesea 2009, 13). During the First World War he worked with the Hungarian avant-garde group involved in publishing the magazine Ma, a collaboration which consolidated the artist’s friendship with writer Lajos Kassák, the group’s leader. The group around the magazine Ma organised a personal exhibition for him in Budapest in 1917 (Almási 2001, 20).
After 1918, Mattis-Teutsch was actively involved in a series of European avant-garde movements, as well as in the local artistic life of Brașov. He became closer to the artistic movement Der Sturm. This experience emphasised his “tendency towards abstractisation” (Mesea 2009, 23–24). At the beginning of the 1920s, Mattis-Teutsch frequently exhibited at the Der Sturm Gallery in Berlin. At the same time, he became part of the Romanian avant-garde groups that coalesced around the magazines Contimporanul and Integral, alongside the artists Marcel Iancu and M. H. Maxy (Vida and Vida 2001, 87). This collaboration culminated with an exhibition organised in Bucharest in 1924 by the group of artists at the Contimporanul magazine, where Mattis-Teutsch exhibited his works next to Paul Klee, Constantin Brâncuși, Hans Arp, Arthur Segal and Lajos Kassák (Mesea 2009, 11). Mattis-Teutsch’s involvement in the Romanian avant-garde overlapped with his evolution towards constructivism. The constructivist stage also led to Mattis-Teutsch’s increased interest in art theory, which resulted in the publication in Germany in 1931 of Kunstideologie. Stabilität und Aktivität im Kunstwerk, a work in which the artist presents his own vision of art and its relationship to society (Mattis-Teutsch 1931). This perspective is marked by his adherence to Marxism. In the 1920s in Germany, Mattis-Teutsch was linked to artistic movements which promoted socialism, such as A bis Z or Novembergruppe in Berlin (Almási 2001, 37).
In the 1920s he was internationally acclaimed, and his exhibitions were well received by the public in Rome, Chicago, Berlin, Vienna, Paris, and Bucharest (Almási 2001, 29). At the European level, his series of paintings Compositions and Seelenblumen/Soulflowers were highly regarded. This international fame crowned his prodigious artistic activity which included painting, sculpture, and drawing using various techniques.
As for the local artistic life in Braşov, it was difficult for Mattis-Teutsch to fully integrate into the group of Transylvanian Saxon intellectuals dominated by conservative values (Ittu 2009, 31). An important role in his local promotion was played by the cultural magazine Das Ziel, published in German, which organised several exhibitions in Braşov at the beginning of the 1920s and which published many reproductions of his graphic works (Vida and Vida 2001, 83–85). The rise of Nazism among the Transylvanian Saxons and of the Romanian far right movements in general at the end of the 1930s determined Mattis-Teutsch to retire from public life and from exhibiting (Popica 2009, 9). His closeness to Marxist groups and his view of art which did not correspond with that promoted by the authorities led to his marginalisation at the end of the 1930s and during the Second World War.
In the first years after the war (1944–1947), there was a revival of avant-garde art in Romania (Vasile 2010, 131–132). Many avant-garde artists, including Mattis-Teutsch, had leftist convictions and were hoping for a democratic evolution towards a more equitable society. Mattis-Teutsch returned to public life, and in October 1944 he founded a union for visual artists called the Free and Democratic Organisation of Braşov Artists. In the following year, he also created an artistic centre called the Free Braşov Academy. This period ended in October 1947, at the congress of the Association of the Unions of Artists, Writers, and Journalists when the official policy on the arts was defined: the arts were to become “ideological weapons” (Cârneci 2013, 20–21). The main instrument used by the communist authorities to control artists’ activity was the Association of Visual Artists (Uniunea Artiștilor Plastici – UAP), which replaced many autonomous unions and associations. The UAP controlled “the entire network of orders and acquisitions made by the state,” and administered “all the artists’ funds and production means” (Cârneci 2013, 22). The union created by Mattis-Teutsch was integrated in the new structure, and the space where his painting academy had functioned was nationalised (Almási 2001, 87).
Although Mattis-Teutsch initially tried to participate in the cultural policies of the new regime, in the hope of fulfilling his leftist ideals, he refused to give up his creative freedom and to comply with the artistic model promoted by the authorities: socialist realism. This is why, starting from 1948, he was criticised by the cultural press, and his painting was considered “decadent” and “bourgeois” (Popica 2015, 3). As a result, Mattis-Teutsch lost his position as head of the Union of Visual Artists in Braşov and was marginalised from artistic life. De-Stalinisation brought about a partial change in the attitude of the communist authorities towards the artist. Their attempt to recover the most famous local painter is illustrated by his appointment in 1957 as head of the local branch of the UAP. However, this appointment did not lead to the concessions the regime expected from the artist, who preserved the specific elements of his style. His works continued to be harshly criticised; for example, Mattis-Teutsch’s exhibition organised in Bucharest in March 1957 was badly received by the official press (Macovescu 1985, 5–6). His marginalisation is also illustrated by the fact that the Braşov Regional Museum, which later became the county museum, did not include any of his works in its permanent collection during the communist period, despite his international prestige (Interview with Radu Popica). Concrete steps towards “recovering and integrating” his work in the “circuit of Romanian art” were taken at the end of the 1960s and the beginning of the 1970s, in the context of the liberalisation of the cultural policies of the Romanian communist regime (Popica 2009, 9). However, as with other members of the avant-garde, the full recovery of his work at national level took place after 1989, through exhibitions and specialised publications.
- Brașov, Romania
Matulaitis (1866-1956) graduated from Moscow University in 1891, and opened a medical practice in Lithuania. While at the university, he began to write articles for the underground Lithuanian newspaper Varpas (The Bell). In 1896, he joined the Lithuanian Social Democratic Party. He was exiled by the Imperial Russian government for his political activities. From 1917 he was a member of the Lithuanian Communist Party. Matulaitis was persecuted in the Republic of Lithuania, and in 1925 he emigrated to the Soviet Union. (He was deported to Kazakhstan in 1937.) While he was still a student, he started to research Lithuanian history. He returned to Soviet Lithuania in 1945, and until 1950 he was a senior researcher at the Lithuanian Institute of History.
In 1950, at a session of the Academy of Sciences, Matulaitis openly criticised the work of the Academy and the Institute of History for ignoring Lithuanian history. Later, he wrote several letters to the Presidium of the Academy explaining his reasons. His case illustrates the situation of scholars and historians in the late Stalinist period. The historian was obliged to work under heavy ideological pressure. Some scholars conformed to the political and ideological realities, while others, a minority, did not, and even openly protested. After the speech mentioned above, he was accused of bourgeois nationalism, and dismissed from his job.
- Vilnius , Lithuania
Rusko Matulić was born in Split (then in the Kingdom of Yugoslavia, now Croatia) in 1933 to a family from the island of Brač. After the fall of Italy in 1943, the Partisans killed his father Roko Matulić in Brač, who was associated with the Chetnik movement and intellectuals, writers and Yugoslav nationalists such as Ivo Andrić and Niko Bartulović. As a boy, he travelled with his mother to El Shatt, Egypt, where resided with other refugees from Dalmatia from February 1944 to November 1948. Later, he passed through Italy, England, Chile and the USA, where remained until the end of his life. He graduated with a degree in electrical engineering and later worked as an engineer for Consolidated Edison in New York (Lađević, 2015).
Among Yugoslav émigrés, he mostly communicated with the Democratic Alternative organization and the circle of intellectuals around Naša reč, an émigré publication from London. The shared political stance of both Matulić and that London circle was the decommunization and democratization of Tito's Yugoslavia, wherein they doggedly opposed its disintegration and transformation of the Yugoslav federal republics into independent sovereign states. Although Mihajlo Mihajlov was the central figure, Matulić was de facto the editor of the bi-monthly CADDY bulletin, which was published in the US from the first half of 1980 to late 1992. It reported on the fate of dissidents, human rights violations and freedom of thought in Yugoslavia since Tito’s death in 1980. Because of all this, Matulic was labelled as a representative of the “hostile emigration” that attacked the foundations of socialist Yugoslavia. His collection emerged simply as a result of his editorial work on the CADDY bulletin, as well as his management of that same organization, in which he received numerous testimonies on the difficulties dissidents faced in Yugoslavia. Additionally, there is an immense body of correspondence in Matulić's collection, not only with dissidents and political émigré, but also with numerous other members of the American political and journalistic establishment.
Matulić published a memoir, February 1944 El Shatt Egypt Nov 1948, in which he argued that refugees from Yugoslavia in Egypt were not only pro-Partisan-oriented, as claimed by Tito’s propaganda, but that there were also those who were anti-communist. He also collected bibliographic units about Yugoslavia in the West and about the character and work of his close associate Mihajlo Mihajlov, on the basis of which he published three bibliographic works: Bibliography of Sources on Yugoslavia (Palo Alto: Ragusan Press 1981), Bibliography of Sources on the Region of Former Yugoslavia (Boulder: East European Monographs), issued in three volumes (1998, 2007, 2014) and Contribution for the Bibliography of Mihajlo Mihajlov in 2014 (Lađević, 2015). Among other articles and essays, his article “Repression of Dissent in Yugoslavia (1956-1984)” published in the collection Human Rights in Yugoslavia (New York: Irvington Publishers 1986) is particularly important to the history of the cultural opposition. He also wrote articles about his primary profession in the field of electrical engineering (Rusko Marulic papers, box 2). He died in 2015 in New York.
- Jersey City, United States of America
- New York, United States
- Split, Croatia 21000