Artists in the Collection

Mihajlo Tomić
(Kladovo, 22 February 1902 – Belgrade, 1 February 1995)

During his education in Paris and according to the requirements of the environment he was later to work in, Mihajlo Tomić opted for figurative sculpture and for professors such as Antoine Bourdelle, Henri Bouchard, Paul Landowsky, Robert Vlerik, and Petar Palavičini in his country. It was in Paris that he began exhibiting in the Salon des Indépendants
in 1927. Later on, he had three solo exhibitions, and as a member of ULUS and “Lada” he was represented by his works at group exhibitions as well until 1985. From the time he finished his education until World War II, he was passing on his knowledge to the students at the School of Applied Arts and those at the Academy of Fine Arts in Belgrade. After the war, he was a teacher in the Third Boys’ High School. At the same time he was involved in sculpture and created various motifs in full plastic and in several types of relief (from portraits and odalisques to monumental
compositions and commemorative busts) in different materials: wood, terracotta, stone and bronze. Although he was soon free from the influence of his teachers, his works retained the monumentality of Bourdelle’s sculptures. He enriched the realist form in which he sculpted by the admixture of the archaic, the stylized and the expressive. His simplification of form and archaic simplicity reveal an understanding of the sculpture as a monolithic set of masses which are created through the synthesis of form, not deviating much from natural shapes. In the multitude of Tomić’s sculptures, there is a large number of sketches of monumental sculptures; among them are also sketches for a monument to Nadežda Petrović. With the permission of the sculptor, one of them was cast in bronze. Also, its enlarged bronze version was placed in front of The Pavle Beljanski Memorial Collection in November 1995.