Ljiljana Blazevska’s works, created over five decades and only recently seen in the US, draw from a combination of Levantine and European influences. Her painterly style conveys a dream-like personal mythology devoid of ordinary narratives. The world she constructs is populated by winged creatures, mutants, princes, mothers and brides.
Ljiljana Blazevska (1944–2020) was born in Skopje, Macedonia. She spent her early childhood in her native city, absorbing the region’s strong Levantine tradition. At the age of 11, Blazevska moved with her family to Belgrade, Serbia, the capital of what was then the federation of Yugoslavia. At the time, the surrounding cultural atmosphere in Belgrade was more central European in influence than her native city. The composite of these two cultural perspectives would later be reflected in her painting.
In 1969, Blazeska completed her postgraduate work in the painting department at the Fine Arts Academy in Belgrade. She studied in the class of the famed Yugoslav painter Ljubica "Cuca" Sokić. By the early 1970s, she had already discovered the formal and thematic elements she would pursue in her paintings.
Over the course of Blazevska’s career, her work has been featured in upwards of 20 solo exhibitions and countless group presentations throughout Yugoslavia, including: BLOK Gallery in Belgrade (2013); Macedonian Painters at SANU Gallery in Belgrade (2009); ULUS Gallery in Belgrade (2006); Kulturni Centar Beograd Art Gallery in Belgrade (1991); Gallery “Commerce” in Ljubljana, Slovenia (1988); and International Exhibition of Female Painters at City Art Gallery in Piran, Slovenia (1976); among many others. Her work has not been widely shown abroad. Her first solo show in the US took place at 15 Orient, New York (2021).