INTERVIEW: MILOS SHOLIM
MOVEMENTS AND MOTIONS
“A surreal way of thinking frees your mind,” says Serbian artist and designer Milos Sholim, who has created a most wondrous Matrix-like world of faceless faces, mechanical minds and endless loops.
Milos, can you tell us a bit more about when and where you were born?
I was born in 1985 in Belgrade, which was the capital of Yugoslavia in that time and is today the capital of Serbia.
I would love to visit Belgrade one day. Tell me why I should or should not …
Well, you should visit Belgrade because I would like to meet you and answer your questions in person. Apart from that, you will be amazed at how much you can eat and drink for a small amount of money.
What and where did you study?
I studied graphic design and visual communication in my hometown.
Today you are a fulltime artist? Or do you have a job on the side?
I have a job as a commercial animator next to my artistic projects and I feel very good about the balance.
You make these wonderfully surreal animated images and movies. Could you tell us a bit more about how an image is made from start to finish?
I start with a basic idea or some footage that inspires me. But from there I consciously go into improvisation. That is the only way to escape from the creative comfort zone and go into different types of thinking and problem solving. I truly enjoy those in moments.
Seeing the emphasis on mechanical minds and repetition in your series Portraits, it seems to me you do not have a very positive view of people and// or society. Things like "people are sheep," "can't think for themselves" come to mind ...
The works in the series Portraits are intellectually a little bit arrogant. That is why I put a dose of humor in them, because I did not want to spread a strictly negative view on people and society. It is what it is. So you can laugh or cry about it at the same time.
Have you consciously lived the Balkan wars? Or were you too young for that? Is that an influence on your work?
Unfortunately, you are never too young to feel fear. It is a hard subject to talk about. I think that growing up in that period did not influence my later work so much, but it definitely did on my view of life as something very precious.
What do you think of: everything changes yet everything stays the same?
That is true. But I think that everything stays ''more and less'' the same. Just enough so we cannot feel negative thoughts of regression.
What’s the power or beauty of the surreal to you?
A surreal way of thinking literally frees your mind and expands your consciousness.
What artists in particular do you consider an influence?
Every artist who never hit the ''lame switch'' in his or her work.
Your short movie Dreams seems an extended “portrait.” Is that your first short movie? And is that the direction you would like to be heading in?
It is a first one in that form and, yes, I am going in that direction of ''Digital Surrealism.”
Your work seems great for a music video. Would that be something you would like to be doing?
It seems that everybody is thinking that, because over the past year I got about five requests for music videos a week. But besides music videos my work can fit great in any aspect of visual communication.
If so, ideally, for what band(s)?
Oh man, this is the most difficult question because I have 100 bands that I call "my favorite one."
INTERVIEWED BY PETER SPEETJENS