Kids with guns

Sadko Hadzihasanovic

March 27 - April 25, 2020

Kids with guns
Kids with guns 1
Ice Cream
Me as Young Soldier of Yugoslav National Army
Summer Girl
Kids with guns 2
Kids with guns 3
Night Watch
Kids with guns 4
Night Watch 2
Kids with guns 5
Kids with guns 6
Bosnian Folk Song
In Rose Garden
Kids with guns 7
Kids with guns 8
Chinese Garden
Kids with guns
Kids with guns 9
What does Hunter Want
Kids with guns 10
Petit Diana Huntress
Al Fresco Dinner
Kids with guns 11
Perfect Vision
Youth Club
Kids with guns 12
Kids with guns 13
Boy At His Best
It's Life
Kids with guns 14
Kids with guns 15
Speedy Gonzales
Have a Cigar
Sunflowers (Young Roma)
Boy with a Rose
Kids with guns 16
Me as Young Soldier
Kids with guns 17
Real Man
Kids with guns 18

Kids with guns

Kids with guns , 2020
installation view

Paul Petro Contemporary Art is pleased to present Kids with guns, a survey of work by Sadko Hadzihasanovic.

"In my art practice I am interested in camouflaging history and ideology in an ironic and often humorous way. Since I moved to Canada in 1993, at the outset of the war in the former Yugoslavia, I was fascinated by the new culture I found myself in and I explored a lot in the area of pop-culture and consumerism.

"As an artist, I like to explore the construction of identity, and its cultural and social implications. With an extensive and ongoing portraiture-based body of work, I use an array of references to popular culture. I am interested in referring to the environment of my upbringing in Bosnia, and the relatively exotic vacation paradise of Cuba and it’s political undertones, as well as Canadian culture. I paint works that contrast a childhood lived under the threat of war and an unhurried North American childhood lived without the looming presence of world affairs.

"I have noticed the constant presence of guns as a subject in my work since I have a arrived in Canada, but I have never made an exhibition which focused entirely on the theme of weapons. I reflect upon the disturbing North American phenomenon, of young boys playing with toy guns, that seemingly condone and glorify violence. In one work, Bosnian Folk Songs (1999), I was thinking about the aftermath of the war in my native country, as a direct response to war. I wanted to focus on children and the difficulties of growing up when they are alone on the streets during unsupervised play time, plastic guns in hand, having known war at a very early age.

"Fleeing from a country torn apart by ethnic conflict and strife I find such trends troubling, prompting me to interrogate the inherent violence of masculinity. Since hunting and guns are a big issue in North American life and culture, Kids with guns will be relevant to many questions we pose today: the role of government in controlling weapons, how we educate children about guns, the role profit plays as well as how we contribute to the resolution of the problem that we face."

— Sadko Hadzihasanovic, 2020

With special thanks to the Ontario Arts Council and the Canada Council for the Arts.

Sadko Hadzihasanovic studied at the Academy of Fine Arts in Belgrade and earned his MFA at the University of Belgrade, Yugoslavia (1984). His first solo exhibitions were at the Museum of Modern Art in Belgrade (1983) and at the National Gallery of Bosnia and Herzegovina (1984), both while still a student. Since his arrival in Toronto from Bosnia in late 1992, Sadko has participated in over seventy exhibitions in public galleries and artist-run centres across Canada and has produced numerous portrait commissions. He is the recipient of visual arts grants from the Toronto Arts Council, the Ontario Arts Council, and the Canada Council for the Arts and has instructed at Georgian College, the University of Guelph, the Koffler Centre and the Avenue Road Arts School. Sadko has been exhibiting at Paul Petro Contemporary Art since 1999.

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