Vladan Radovanović was born in Belgrade, September 5, 1932. He graduated in composition at the Belgrade Academy of Music, the class of Milenko Živković. With another three artists he founded in 1958 the Mediala Project, which he abandoned in 1959. He was one of the founders, and 1972-1999 the director of the Radio Belgrade Electronic Studio. In 1993 he proposed the project and formed an open group SINTUM. His creative efforts have been in the domain of painting, literature, new media and polymedia syntheses. Independently from avantgarde movements in the world, he explored similar fields: “vocovisuel” projects (1954), tactile art (1956), polymedia and body art (1957), tape music (1960), electronic music (1966), computer music (1976), computer graphics (1988). The central place in his poetics is allotted to SYNTHESIC ART and VOCOVISUEL. He wrote more than 200 theoretical texts on music and new tendencies in the arts.
He worked in studios in Warsaw (1966), Paris (1969), Utrecht (1976) and Budapest (1987). He had 23 independent exhibitions, performances and concerts at home and abroad. His compositions were selected three times to represent Yugoslavia (1969, 1976, 1988) on festivals of the International Society for Contemporary Music (SIMC).
He received 10 domestic and international awards for music (including three awards at the competition Yugoslav Music on Radio – 1969, 1972 and 1975; October Award 1971; Second Prize in Bourges for electroacoustic music 1979; Gianfranco Zafrani on Prix Italia, 1984; First Prize at the International Review of Composers in Belgrade 1998), three literary awards (one of them the Nolit Award, 1968) and four for visual arts (First Prize of the Ministry of Culture for the best multi-media exhibition, 1992; First Prize for video in Sao Polo, 1997; First Prize for mixed-media at the Eighth International Biennale of Miniature in Gornji Milanovac 2005).
He is a member of the Serbian Composers Association and the Association of Fine Arts of Serbia. Since 2001 he lectures by invitation at the University of Arts in Belgrade, Group for Polymedia Arts. In 2005 he became an honorary Doctor of Music of the Columbus University, Ohio. In 2006 he was conferred an honorary doctorate of the University of Arts in Belgrade. His name is included in the lexicon Serbs Who Marked the 20th century
– Five Hundred Personalities.
(First Prize at the International Review of Composers, Belgrade 1998)
The idea to write this piece came to me in a dream in which I saw human figures move in darkness and sing. Carrying sonic-light orbs, the figures formed configurations similar to constellations.
Constellations represent a piece of synthesic art ruled by a higher determinacy of relationships between events in different media, the equality of media, and all media lines proceed from a single center. Three components merge in Constellations: sonic, visual and kinetic. The sonic one consists of 12 voices, 12 sounds produced by orbs and electronic sounds. The visual side comprises 12 orbs in different colors, the slide projections of certain constellations and video of the score. The kinetic manifests in the movements or the lack of movements by the performers. In the states of rests the performers form a figure that matches a constellation, and their positions are completely determined. The movements are not strictly defined, only directed. The form of the piece is organized as a series of connected sections: introduction, entrance, the sequence of 23 constellations, the transitions between certain groups of constellations, exit and epilogue. The constellations follow one another, grouped according to their proximity in space, or their mythological context.
Although thus multi-media work consists of three relatively equal and interdependent components, the music is composed in such a way that it can be performed on its own. The music itself is a synthesis of electroacoustic and vocal media. In view of the distinction that I make between certain “tribes” of sound, this music belongs to the cosmic. In order to achieve a certain, not always easily recognizable, connection between the visual aspect of the constellations and their sound, the constellations are also “projected” onto the score.
The television version is not only a documentary presentation of this work’s performance on stage, but also a video work which makes use of procedures specific of the medium involved.