City Moved by Images
Mural ”Four Fat Horses”, painted in 1992, was saved from the lethal embrace of one advertisement and shone with a new glow. The same author also painted the mural ”I only count the sunny hours”. Some other walls revealed the giants of Serbian culture, Bečkerek Fortress, even the famous Trotters. This city has smiled to its creative and youthful image in the mirror. And winked

Text and photographs: Miodrag Grubački

Several unseemly facades in this Banatian town have been turned into interesting large scale street canvases. Murals, of course, are nothing new, but these in Zrenjanin have been drawing attention lately, primarily because of their authenticity and originality. result of work of several artists is refinement of city areas, preventing deterioration of facades and creating a unique outdoor gallery that is visited by thousands of viewers every day.
This summer, the citizens of Zrenjanin were rejoiced by the news that a local business association was initiating restoration of the mural Four Fat Horses, first painted in 1992. Some time ago, a big advertisement of a beer manufacturer was placed over the then dilapidated mural. Completely (un)expectedly, reaction of the general public ensued, leading to the removal of the advertisement in only a few days. This has made them think about the restoration of the mural.
His author Milutin Mićić, a painter who lives and works in this city, has accepted the invitation to refresh his work, eroded by time and weather conditions, and the mural, which is located next to the busiest street in the city, soon shone with a new glow.
The same author also painted the mural Horas non numero nisi serenas (”I only count the sunny hours”) on the façade of the School of Economy in Zrenjanin, which also functions as a sundial, visible from the wide area in front of the school.
Viorel Flora, a painter from Zrenjanin, painted a mural with dimensions 14x4 meters in the City Garden (Županijski Park), with the motif of the Bečkerek Fortress, which used to be located there. Numerous visitors of this green oasis within the City House building never miss the opportunity to take a photo exactly in front of that mural, embarking on a journey through time and walks under the walls of the long demolished fortification.


Within the project ”Move the City”, realized some time ago in several parts of Serbia, young artist Ana Kraš created a poetic mural in Zrenjanin entitled The wind plays music, cover me with wind. Inspiration with košava wind, which can blow quite fiercely in the plains, made the people of Zrenjanin accept this work as their own. The mural also stands out for an unusual motif painted ”along the vertical line”. Several other artistic wall creations have found themselves in the center of Zrenjanin, such as the mural City is my playground on the façade of another local school.
Finally, the largest residential settlement in Zrenjanin, ”Baglјaš”, with its fifteen thousand inhabitants, is often targeted by the vandals who, with their inappropriate messages, make every attempt at painting and restoring facades pointless. Exactly this uglifying of the buildings and the city inspired a group of young enthusiasts to start thinking in a completely different way. This spring, almost overnight, an original portrait of Nikola Tesla appeared on one of the side walls of garages in this settlement. Positive reactions have not subsided yet, and an image of another giant appeared on a nearby wall: Mihajlo Pupin. They were soon joined by Vuk Karadžić, whose portrait was painted exactly on a school building.
The last mural in this series, made by the same group of authors, somewhat unexpectedly presented to the people of Zrenjanin the unforgettable characters from comedy series Only Fools and Horses – Del Boy, Rodney and Uncle Albert. Many connected the appearance of the legendary Trotters on this place with the benches in front of the mural, on which pensioners have been playing chess and cards for years and, somehow, the famous slogan from the series, written on this wall as well, befits them: ”This time next year, we’ll be millionaires!” In this way, the cheerful spirit of the Trotters, radiates through Zrenjanin, creating from this and all other murals some new urban stories, imbued with optimism and escape from often gloomy local reality.


We don’t need to emphasize that Four Horses are actually a symbol of this city, also immortalized in a song, and that every public presentation of them, especially on such a scale, among the citizens of the city on the Begej, attracts great positive reactions.


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