essay about authorbibliographyartist's influences
Ex Yugoslavia

Micic's parents originate from Banija. His father, Petar, was a Royal hunter from Majski Trtnik, and his mother, Marija, born Stojic, came from Majske Poljane. He attended primary school in Glina where he for the first time experienced cinema, circus, traveling theater and the first railway in Banija, all of which strongly influenced his later work. From an early age he expressed an interest in the arts, especially theater, drama and acting. At his family home, his mother, "who by heart knew the entire “Pevanije” and many songs by Branko", taught him poetry which he recited as a child. During his student days he wrote the theatrical text , The Coasts of Life,  which he later burned. In his teenage years Micic continued to perform recitals at the Youth Association Polet / Verve in Karlovac, 

In Zagreb, where he continued his education, as secretary of the Serbian High School Association (SSU) in 1913/14 he founded a theater which gave performances in Serbian Falcon Hall (Bogovićeva Street 7). Micic acted as manager, playwright, director, set designer, actor and "everything else". The repertoire included plays by B. Nusic, K. Trifkovic and others. He earned his degree in Philosophy at the University of Zagreb in 1918. He was a soldier during World War I, and later an actor. Micic was mobilized in the fall of 1915, attended the Reserve Officer School in Rijeka (1916), completed a course in senior nursing, and was sent to the front in Galicia. His voyage to the front by train and on foot led him across the Carpathians where he was confronted with the horrors of war. Threatened as a soldier of being shot, Micic saved himself by pretending to be insane.  He was takento Zagreb and imprisoned in a military hospital (a former monastery) in Samobor 1916/17.
In Samobor Micic met the writer Pecija Petrovic who negotiated his engagement in the Theater of Osijek (September 1917 - January 1918). Although he had performed various roles and, according to reviews in certain newspapers was well received, Micic left the theater because of disagreements with then-director Nadvornik. He acted in Hasanaginica by M. Ogrizović (in the role of  Qadi of Imotski), Mrs. X by A. Bisson; Heavenly Sphere by  G.A. de Caillaveta R. de Flersa and E. Rey; Mr. Frog by Zapolski,  Stupid James by T. Rittnera; and Faun by E. Knoblauch . His autograph on the back of  his photo portrait of December, 27. 1917  states: "To my brother Branko, in memory of the year in which we both traveled thorny paths of an actor's life. Maybe this experience will bring us closer?”.

From that period dates an unsigned, and likely unfinished portrait of him by Milivoj Uzelac (now in the National Museum in Belgrade), as can be concluded by Anuška's letter to Micic from May, 20, 1920. In the letter she mentions a  "Hamlet-like portrait with Bulgarian tamburitsa", which signifies "strings of sad sounds”. His other portraits were painted by Mihailo S. Petrov during the Belgrade phase of Zenitism . Micic continued his theater career with Pecija Petrovic in Samobor, and planned to establish a permanent Old Serbian Theater in Dubrovnik or Split.

In the spring of 1918 he attended – according correspondence between Anuška and Micic - "the great historical assembly of Slav peoples" in Prague. During that year, he says (Zenit, no. 41, 1926), "he was the first to carry the flag of 'liberation' over the border",  "defended new law and order with guns", "brought regiments under oath” to the National Council of Slovenes, Croats and Serbs.  As "an accomplished philosopher" from the University of Zagreb Micic became its commissioner for Petrinja and Glina districts (according to documents issued in Zagreb on October 30, 1918). Since that year Micic published his poems, theater, literature and visual arts essays in magazines and newspapers, "Exhibition" (Vrsac), "Illustrated News", "Savremenik," "Word of Serbs-Croats-Slovenes", "Youth," "Literary South", "News", "Yugoslav fields", "Agramer Tagblatt "," Home and World "," New Europe "," Criticism" , " Morning newspaper” (all in Zagreb), "Bella" (Sarajevo), "Mask" (Ljubljana).

During 1919 Micic earend the status of journalist - collaborator in Zagreb's political daily "News" (where according to Elias Jakovljevic he spread Expressionism and encouraged its supporters) and simultaneously published his first collection of poems Rhythm of My Hunches, whose innovative verse and  shortness of poetic forms provoked the attention of M. Crnjanskog. However, Crnjanski rejected its patriotic content. Soon, the second collection entitled Salvation of the Soul (1920) followed, which - according to the preface by poet Tin Ujevic – was a mixture of "mysticism and sensuality". Both books of poetry were illustrated with drawings by Anka Krizmanic. That same year his expressionist drama-poem Original Sin - The Mystery for Ungodly Men of Pure Conscience (cover and vignette by Vilko Gecan, two editions), was published. This work was imbued with philosophical thinking, and close to the lyrical drama of Symbolism. 

Micic's poetry in the original and its translation were included in a representative selection of modern Croatian and South Slavic poetry (in German) and Yugoslavian poetry (Vers libres anthology, which was edited and translated in French  by Ani Sela, alias Anna Cella, Zagreb ,1920). In addition to Micic, these anthologies presented M. Crnjanski, M. Krleža, G. Krklec, and A.B. Simic. Nikola Polic Kamov has singled out Micic as a poet who, along with A.B. Simic, M. Krleža and A. Cesarec was fostering free verse. According to some, Micic was the first one in Zagreb to promote the idea of updating the ways of reading and presenting modern poetry.

The radical shift in Micić's work and art occured in February, 1921, when he has started  Zenit - an international magazine for arts and culture. Zenit was published  with different subtitles, format, pace and place of publication (Zagreb, Belgrade). The Zagreb phase has ended with issue 24 published in May, 1923, when Micić after a politically provocative article on Stjepan Radic and Croatian culture in general, moved the entire operation to Belgrade. "Zenit" was published until December 1926 and terminated after a total of 43 issues. Micic was in close collaboration with Serbian, Croatian and Slovenian writers and artists, and other prominent representatives of Eastern and Western European culture. His anti-traditional programatic concepts and art practices (the idea of Balkanization of Europe, the collapse of the West, Barbarogenious, the Balkans as the sixth continent, etc.) included a number of innovations in various spheres of visual arts, magazine design and typography.

Micic started Zenit Editions (1921), founded the Gallery of Domestic and Foreign Modern and Avant-garde Artists (1922), practiced propaganda, curated the International Exhibition of New Art (1924), participated and curated the Yugoslav Zenitism  section at the Revolutionary Art of West Exhibition in Moscow (1926), and held several lectures and Zenitist Evenings. All these activities included "Zenit" within the radical-oriented media of Europe of its time. In his works, published in the Zenit Editions, Micic advocated and, in general, practiced programmatic creativity in accordance with the Zenitist Manifesto (1921) and elaborated formal and thematic aspects of Zenitism in poetry (Aeroplan Without Engine, 1925.; Antieuropa, 1926.), and introduced original and experimental aesthetics of poli-genre creativity (God Damn It, a book famous as Rescue Vehicle - a title given by Micic after the ban and censorship in 1922).

The same program orientation was stated with Micic's album Arhipenko - New sculptrue, a monograph on the famous sculptor (1923), which propagates the idea of the creation of Zenitist sculpture. Micic's concept of the magazine's  pragmatic mission has included public appearances, propaganda and demonstrations. Zenitist Evenings regularly presented an overview of the group's activities (Zagreb, Belgrade), including propaganda trips to Munich and Berlin in July and August of 1922. Micic asked his employers permission to study abroad, and as a consequence was instead transferred from Zagreb to work in Mitrovica.  After he declined the transfer, Micic was fired from his teaching position at the Royal Male Teachers College in Zagreb on June, 25, 1922, by decision of the Province Administration of Croatia and Slavonia Act no 22 . 413., and he was so informed by the College's Board on  July 1, 1922, letter no. 387.

In Berlin, Micic with his wife Anuska was introduced to the editors of  literary and art magazines (H. Walden, I. Ehrenburg and El Lissitzky, who later edited  Zenit's issue on Russia , no. 17-18, 1922), and artists, writers and poets (A.C. Willink, F.R. Behrens). Micic was also introduced to film circles (A. Nielsen, C. Veidt), attended  theater plays and closed-door film screenings at film studios. In December, 1926 with his brother Branko Ve Poljanski Micic organized political and cultural demonstrations against Indian poet and philosopher Rabindranath Tagore during his visit to Belgrade.

The only reason for the police to ban the magazine was the essay Zenitism Through the Prism of Marxism by Dr. M. Rašin, published in  "Zenit" no. 43, 1926, its last issue. Thereafter, the State prosecutor filed an indictment against the editor Micic for alleged spreading of communist propaganda and indirect call to citizens to use force for revolutionary change of social order, following the success of the Russian Revolution. These political accusations forced Micic to leave Belgrade during the night  of December, 15 /16,  1926, flee through Zagreb and Susak to Rijeka, where he was arrested on December, 17.  Micic remained  imprisoned until December, 23 and then, thanks to T.F. Marinetti, was freed to continue to Paris on January, 14, 1927.

While awaiting permission to leave Rijeka, Micic was in Opatija at Faith Biller's, where he met Luigi Pirandello and the leading actress of Pirandello's theater in Rome. From January 6 - 9, 1927, he was visited by his wife Anuška who likely brought numerous artworks that Micić had transferred to France, a country in which he began a nine year period of exile (1927 -1936).

According to Micic's autobiographical notes, on January, 15, a former collaborator of "Zenit" Ivan Goll awaited him at the railway station in Paris. While in Paris, Micic was first stayed at the Hotel Cedar, and then settled in Meudon (Villa Zenith, Rue des Jardies 14, later Rue des Galons 65). He continued his literary work in French by publishing mostly autobiographical novels with philosophical and historical implications, or novels that in a romanesque mode further developed the Zenitist idea and image of its main character Barbarogenius: Hardi! A la Barbarie. Paroles zénitistes d’un barbare européen (1928, illustrated by his brother B. Ve Poljanski; originals are preserved in Micic's legacy), then Zéniton, L'Amant de Fata Morgana (1930), Les Chevaliers de Montparnasse (1932), Etre ou non pas être and Après Sarajevo - Expedition punitive (1933) Rien Sans Amour (1935), and Barbarogénie le Décivilisateur (1938).

Soon after his arrival in Paris, Micic established relationships with representatives of the Slovenian avant-garde, Avgust Černigoj, leader of Constructivist Group, and Ferdo Delak, the main representative of new theater trends in Slovenia.  Thanks to Delak's invitation, Micić was editor and representative of Tank, Revue Internationale Active (1927 - 1928). During his stay in Paris, Micic attempted to open an art gallery.  He was in the company of artists, writers, magazine editors Emile Malespine, C. Arnauld, M. Seuphor, S. Charchoune, I. and K. Goll, P. Dermee, A. Adam, H. Barbusse, T. Tzara and others. Micic also sought to restore the magazine, "Zenit" in the form of poster-flyer Zenit en Emigration.

Micic returned to Belgrade in 1936. In May, 25, 1940, published the Serbian Manifesto in his literary-political jmagazine "Srbianship" (he was editor and director, with offices in Njegoševa street no. 69; where he lived with his wife Anuska until moving to Prote Mateja st 18. During World War II, and later, he did not participate in literary and artistic life and his avant-garde activity fell into oblivion. After the War, he was contacted by a very small circle of intellectuals in Yugoslavia. However, he carried on an intensive correspondence with a vider group of intellectuals abroad. To many addresses he sent his "bibliophile edition", typed on a typewriter in a dozen copies on thin paper, in color, with a constructivist-zenitistist hand-made illustrations (seals, lines, colors, photos, press clippings, advertisements for products, etc.; some of these elements were already used during the Zenitst period). In these volumes Micic evoked the heroic past of the magazine, the movement and himself, the reputation and success that "Zenit" had abroad, and its repudiation in Yugoslavia. He wrote about Serbs and Croats, advocated the Cyrillic alphabet, and discussed various problems of everyday life. His poem Requiem pour Anouchka - Gloire à Paris was published In the anthology Odessa à Paris (Ed. de la Revue Modern, Paris, 1962.) (pp. 146-147).

Micic died in a nursing home in Kačarevu on June 14, 1971 with the diagnosis - pneumonia. He was buried beside his wife Anuska, at the New Cemetery in Belgrade at the expense of two young friends who cared about him and with whom he spent his last hours. Interest in Micic was renewed during the sixties and has further developed with a new wave of research of the European avant-garde of the twenties. Since then a series of books, studies and texts, several exhibitions, several films and television shows were made. Gradually the significance and value of Micic as writer, critic, editor of journals and books, creator, animator and propagator of radically new literary and artistic tendencies, has been established. His work still encourages the younger generations.

V. Golubovic - I. Subotic