To understand the latest work from Serbian artist Vojislav Radovanovic, one must travel back in time — way back in fact, to the beginning of the universe. Theory of Unity is the delicate interpretation of some big ideas, including the singularity and big bang theories, in which the universe was created from the explosion of a single particle. Expanding this idea to Earth’s natural world, Radovanovic draws together seemingly disparate species to co-exist in a re-drawn version of the world. A series of collages is formed entirely of magazine clippings from National Geographic; the works unite Madagascan trees with those from Africa and the Asian steppes in symbolic and beautiful compositions.
Radovanovic also finds room for some of the less celebrated species in nature: weeds. He casts these plants as heroic outsiders, struggling to survive against an onslaught of perpetual pruning and chemical attacks, painted as villains of horticulture while actually playing an important role in the natural order, offering benefits to the soil and human health in many cases. The exhibition’s central installation brings together the celebrated and the vilified, the natural and the man-made in one finely-detailed work growing symbolically upwards from a bed of soil. Theory of Unity is being shown at the Gallery of Contemporary Art Niš in Serbia until 24 May.