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Dusan Matic (Cuprija, 1898 – Beograd, 1980) was a poet, novelist, critic, essayist, and translator. He completed his elementary and secondary school education in different cities in Serbia. His first poem was published in the Workers’ Gazette in 1915. At the end of the same year he retreated with the Serbian army in Albania. As a teenager, he was later transferred to Marseilles and continued his education in Gapu, Grenoble and Nice, where he graduated from Serbian high school in 1917. In the fall of the same year he enrolled at the University of Paris to study philosophy. His particular interests were the philosophy of Henri Bergson, according to which, for his thesis at Sorbonne, he planned to interpret Marcel Proust’s problem of time. During his Parisian days he was acquainted and socialized with Rastko Petrovic.
Matic graduated from Belgrade University in 1922 with a degree in Philosophy. Between 1924 and 1937, he worked as a high school teacher. Because of his political convictions he was arrested three times: 1932, 1938 and 1941. Before joining the Surrealist movement, Matic’s art practice was solitary or with art groups which did not have a strong cohesive core. In 1922 and 1923, he collaborated in the first issues of "Putovi / Paths” magazine, a form of almanac of contemporary literature, which did not promote any specific aesthetic program, direction, or school of thought. Matic contributed philosophically intoned and poetic texts, an example of which was Truth As a Construction, concerned with pragmatism and essays on Freud’s psychoanalysis. His goal was to distinguished between the forms of essay and poetry (Let it be your will). Matic published poetry under the surname Maps of World.
In the bohemian and artistic atmosphere of Moskva café Matic met Monny de Boully, another collaborator of Rade Drainac’s "Hypnos" (1923). As an intellectual and erudite teacher, Matic introduced de Boully to modern literature and philosophy. For Matic 1924 was particularly fruitful. This year was characterized by auto-analytical writings in prose: Consignment (from the tiniest notebooks ) for the almanac Black on White, as well as Battle Over the Wall for the summer triple issue of "Paths" edited by M. Crnjanski and M. Ristic. Matic also participated in the launch and editing of "Svedočanstva / Testimonies" magazine (published November 21, 1924 – March 1, 1925 – a total of eight issues) where he contributed introductory texts for two thematic issues dedicated to Tin Ujevic and Records from the Insane House (Creating Madness).
In the summer of 1925 Matic was in direct collaboration with Paris Surrealists. He was completely immersed in the Parisian artistic environment, rambling local streets, meeting Breton, hanging out with Surrealists in the café Cyrano, and together with them signed the manifesto, Revolution Above All and Always written on the occasion of the French military intervention in the colony of Morocco. At first Manifesto was printed in the form of Surrealist leaflet, and later published in the pro-communist magazine Clarté, and, finally, in the fifth issue of the Surrealist Revolution (1925).
After his return from Paris, Matic was recognized as a mature surrealist poet and critic through his contributions to Gligorić’s Contemporary Review (1927) and magazine 50 in Europe by Zvezdan Vujadinović. He contributed poems, poetry in prose, articles on the Public Bird of Milan Dedinac, and relied on the surrealist themes and concepts of the subconscious, hallucinations, document, the objective case. He was actively involved in organizing the Surrealist movement, and together with Marko Ristic became one of its major theorists. Matic edited and collaborated in surrealist publications: the almanac L’Impossible (1930) and the magazine Surrealism Here and Now (1931-1932) . After the World War II he pursued various careers, including as professor and rector of the Theater Academy. In his literary works he adopted the expressive forms of the novel and essay.
Matic was one of the Zenit’s Parisian collaborators. In an article written for Micic’s Zenit he deliberated on Intuitionism according to Bergson’s presentation for the Philosophers summit in Oxford in September, 1920. Matic terminated collaboration with Micic simultaneously with Zenit’s other Belgrade associates.