Almissa

09. – 14. 08. 2019.

2016

Spin

The main theme and focus of this year’s 7th edi­tion of Almissa Open Art Fest­iv­al is spin . The term is syn­onym­ous with rota­tion, revolu­tion, and it was appro­pri­ated from sports – cro­quet or table ten­nis, for instance. It is a tech­nique used to change the course of the ball and fool the oppon­ent.

Lately, the term is becom­ing increas­ingly related to polit­ics, i.e. polit­ic­al mar­ket­ing, and is gen­er­ally con­sidered pejor­at­ive. Polit­ic­al spin is often recog­nised as a vari­ety of meth­ods and manip­u­la­tions used to cover up bad res­ults, people or events. An example would be feed­ing people with inac­cur­ate inform­a­tion that is sup­posed to make a situ­ation seem bet­ter than it is in real­ity. The extent to which these tech­niques are used nowadays is reflec­ted in the fact that spin is almost exclus­ively inter­preted as a false­hood.

This selec­tion of works by Croa­tian con­tem­por­ary artists will attempt to demon­strate that spin should not always be regarded as some­thing entirely neg­at­ive, and that manip­u­la­tion and con­struc­tion of a new image does not always equal lie.

Along­side faith­ful rep­res­ent­a­tion, i.e. reflec­tion or inter­pret­a­tion of the real, visu­al art since its very begin­ning has provided (an)other view of the real­ity; it depar­ted con­ven­tion­al frames of (re)presentation, mak­ing the hid­den vis­ible… In this case, spin is a cre­at­ive meth­od – a turn aim­ing to provide a new per­spect­ive, not to deceive; to entice senses and intel­lect, not to restrain them.

This cata­logue and the fol­low­ing text should fore­mostly provide key for the ‘inter­pret­a­tion’ of the dis­played art­works to audi­ence unfa­mil­i­ar with con­tem­por­ary art.

The world around me

Every­day situ­ations and scenes are the focus of Marko Erce­gov­ić’s artist­ic activ­ity. His approach, based on doc­u­ment­ing events and situ­ations, oozes with unpre­ten­tious­ness. In the era char­ac­ter­ised by over­load of lar­ger than life or too beau­ti­ful to be real photo mater­i­al and imagery; in a time when many real and fake paparazzi prey upon pic­ant or exclus­ive stor­ies in order to take advant­age of them eco­nom­ic­ally; in a time marked by vari­ous celebrit­ies whose every move needs to be recor­ded by cam­era, Marko’s eye/camera catches unique, small, anonym­ous moments. Tak­ing a pic­ture is a test­a­ment to the pres­ence of the author here and now. Marko is a keen observ­er who brings to us excerpts from the spec­tacle known as the ‘real life’.

Ordin­ary and under­ap­pre­ci­ated images that are often taken for gran­ted and almost invis­ible to the eye of a com­mon observ­er are doc­u­mented in Boris Cvjetan­ović’s Nature and the City pho­to­graphy cycle. City is the set and nature is the agent. We are wit­ness­ing cohab­it­a­tion of these two prot­ag­on­ists through a series of photo frames. Sim­il­ar to any rela­tion­ship, this one also brings about states of har­mony and chaos, code­pend­ency, con­tact, rejec­tion, con­flict… Seem­ingly insig­ni­fic­ant frames show­ing this cohab­it­a­tion are caught by the mas­ter observer’s exper­i­enced and vigil­ant eye. Besides this, it takes a poet­ic soul to notice an irre­mark­able scene. Although human fig­ure can­not be seen in any of these pho­to­graphs, the pres­ence of women and men and the con­sequences of their activ­it­ies are vis­ible in every frame. The city is cre­ated by humans; it is a usurped piece of nature they tried to con­trol. In this case, the iden­tity of the Great Manip­u­lat­or is obvi­ous.

At a first glance, we may not be able to recog­nise motifs presen­ted to us by Darko Škrobonja. Regard­less of the high prob­ab­il­ity that we would, after a brief obser­va­tion, fig­ure out what they rep­res­ent, Darko’s “visu­al rebus” actu­ally does not seek for a solu­tion. Details, such as build­ing façade in the rain, sec­tion of pave­ment, neon reflec­ted in a puddle of water, or a simple bush, are ini­tial impulses/inspiration for cre­at­ing a work that is not just an ordin­ary copy of real­ity, but an art­work in its own right. By using/manipulating photo tech­niques, such as pro­nounced black-white con­trast, pho­to­graphs start to resemble draw­ings or prints. The amount of light is a con­struct­ive visu­al ele­ment that reveals only as much as Darko wants to show us.

In Ivan Fak­t­or’s movie Waste­land, the light is the nar­rat­or. It reveals char­ac­ters and objects. It unveils the plot. It gives insight into one of the last examples of unique type of house­holds typ­ic­al for the 18th and the 19th cen­tury Hun­gary, Slavo­nia and Baranja. Waste­lands were owned by rich fam­il­ies pop­u­lat­ing the plains of Slavo­nia. Built on pas­tures, they served for rais­ing cattle, horses and pigs in the open. Autonom­ously organ­ised and planned, these com­munit­ies were inhab­ited by their own­ers, as well as wan­der­ers, adven­tur­ers and the land­less in some cases. Today, there are only two res­id­ents left. Wan­der­ers and the oth­ers decided to con­sider new life oppor­tun­it­ies a long time ago. The only thing left is the silence that will become even stronger when the last light goes out. Waste­land is a testi­mony about a way of life dis­ap­pear­ing; pre­served on a film tape last­ing only 26 minutes.

As opposed to the story from Slavo­ni­an plains, Lana Stojićević reminds us of every­day, famil­i­ar images. Dal­ma­tian land­scapes, impreg­nated with tra­di­tion, and Medi­ter­ranean as it once was, the pride of every local pat­ri­ot­ic story, have been con­tam­in­ated by phe­nom­ena exposed by Lana in her Villa Roza Pro­ject. Humor­ous image of house a la cake, i.e. house-shaped cake, is used by the author to point towards the epi­dem­ic of kitsch, visu­al rape of space and egot­ist­ic­al need to accen­tu­ate one’s liv­ing space. Spir­itu­al poverty looks for a sub­sti­tute in any form of unique­ness. Spec­tacle is self-suf­fi­cient, and the mater­i­al excess cam­ou­flages the lack of con­tent.

Dia­met­ric­ally con­trast­ing image of real­ity, in a nar­rat­ive where mater­i­al extra­vag­ance is exchanged with a lack of it, is appar­ent in Work­ing Day, art­work by Mili­jana Babić. The artist spent an 8‑hour work day col­lect­ing return­able bottles. It ended by cash­ing in on the bottles at a local shop­ping centre. Today we are wit­ness­ing small armies of reusable pack­aging col­lect­ors. We can see them in our neigh­bour­hoods, in the streets, whille passing by… People dig­ging through garbage. Twenty years ago it was a rare sight, but today, we take it for gran­ted. Legit­im­ate intro­duc­tion of pay­ment for return­able pack­aging, i.e. pay­ment for waste col­lec­ted, provided many people with at least some kind of chance to make money. The col­lapse of state social con­science com­pelled numer­ous people to choose between beg­ging or this way of earn­ing money in order to sur­vive; it is the way that forces them to sup­press their pride, but enables them to keep their mor­ale – the only thing they have left. Mili­jana per­formed the action while wear­ing a T‑shirt with the Croa­tian Freel­ance Artists Asso­ci­ation logo prin­ted on it. As its mem­ber, Milijana’s health and retire­ment insur­ance is covered by the asso­ci­ation. She is aware that the act, embed­ded with irony, may some day become her real­ity. Then, like so many oth­ers, she will only have these two options, men­tioned above, left. Dur­ing 8 hours of col­lect­ing reusable bottles, Mili­jana earned 26,50 kuna (less than four Euro).

Point of view

Exist­en­tial reas­ons are pre­text to Đorđe Jandrić’s work. The author lives in Zagreb and works as a pro­fess­or at the Academy of Applied Arts in Rijeka. He drives to work every day. Dur­ing 2014 he decided to film his jour­neys to work and back home. HRPA ZgRiZg is a com­pil­a­tion con­tain­ing almost infin­ite num­ber of driv­ing hours. Cam­era placed behind the wind­shield takes us through dif­fer­ent places, situ­ations, weath­er con­di­tions and sea­sons. We share co-driver’s per­spect­ive, wit­ness­ing jour­ney. Only relaxed driv­ing, devoid of phys­ic­al engage­ment, can ensure care­free enjoy­ment in sur­round­ing land­scapes; in relaxed moments of over­tak­ing heavy trucks; in feel­ing safe regard­less of sun­shine or snow, uncon­cerned by the state on roads or tire pres­sure. This kind of situ­ation gives us enough time to focus on the details we nor­mally would not detect. How­ever, after some time, we lose con­cen­tra­tion and interest in the road ahead. As the road and time pass by, we start to become con­scious of the author and his year-long adven­ture; of the trips back and forth, reach­ing the fin­ish line, only to set anoth­er one just after. Move­ment points to the author’s pos­i­tion, as well as ours beside him. If there was no move­ment, that pos­i­tion would be mean­ing­less, with the view through the wind­shield only con­firm­ing that.

Ver­tigo is based on motion, more pre­cisely, rota­tion­al move­ment. In his video series under the same title, Toni Meštro­vić takes pan­or­amic views of the places he vis­its and exhib­its his art in. Spin­ning the cam­era over his head, Toni makes dizzy­ing land­scape scenes that remind us of care­free moments of children’s carou­sel rides. How­ever, it can also cause naus­eat­ing effect. Dur­ing viol­ent rota­tion, the point of view is lost. Solid ground dis­ap­pears under feet. Mov­ing in circles is no solu­tion. Schizo­phren­ic way of life just received its visu­al equi­val­ent.

Per­spect­ive and point of view are the main pre­oc­cu­pa­tions of Igor Ešk­inja’s artist­ic oeuvre. His two pho­to­graphs, Pro­ject Room 1 and Pro­ject Room 2, were taken in gal­lery space. What we per­ceive as an image of water sur­face is actu­ally a draw­ing on the floor. Seem­ingly! As opposed to reg­u­lar draw­ings, this one is made using iron shav­ings piled up on the gal­lery floor. Using optic­al illu­sion, the author did not merely cre­ate a draw­ing, but a com­plete paint­ing. How­ever, if we move slightly to the left or to the right, or take a step for­ward or back; if we leave a spe­cif­ic obser­va­tion point, the pic­ture will be lost and the illu­sion will dis­ap­pear. Anoth­er shift in Igor’s work is evid­ent from his choice of motifs: image of water sur­face is cre­ated using iron shav­ings from the foundry neigh­bour­ing the gal­lery. While cre­at­ing the imit­a­tion of water, the artist pur­pose­fully used the mater­i­al that sinks in the water most quickly.

Imagine if…

So far, the presen­ted art­works were mainly anchored to real­ity. Abund­ance of imagery, storytelling and nar­rat­ives offered by real­ity is count­less. If there is a broad­er space than that, it may only be found in ima­gin­a­tion.

The power of ima­gin­a­tion and dreams is restric­ted only by us. We may find cre­at­ive images in the series of works by Marko Tadić. Pro­ject entitled We Used to Call It: Moon is a story about anoth­er Moon orbit­ing around Earth. This fab­ric­ated story brings for­ward testi­mon­ies about ran­dom appear­ances of the second Moon. There are pho­to­graphs, post­cards and doc­u­ments that have evaded cen­sor­ship. The second Moon is here, glides above us, in spite of efforts to con­ceal it. The second Moon is present; we just need to let ourselves see it.

Ima­gin­ary remains of ima­gin­ary air­plane from my ima­gin­ary house yard” is a text inscribed on the art­work Air­plane by Ivan Tudek. A piece of tin sheet metal care­lessly left on the floor is enough for us to ima­gine any air­plane or a house yard. There is no need to add addi­tion­al ele­ments to con­struct a story. We can determ­ine ourselves what kind of air­plane it could be: a sport air­craft, a mil­it­ary air­craft or an air­liner. The house yard can be large or small, main­tained or not. The ques­tion is: how did this piece end up in the yard? What are the reas­ons and the con­sequences of it? Story can move in indef­in­ite dir­ec­tions. Tudek’s air­plane can take us to innu­mer­able des­tin­a­tions.

Unlike Tudek’s air­plane, Tina Vukaso­vić’s escal­at­ors will not take us any­where. Nine draw­ings on paper show dif­fer­ent escal­at­or types. They share inab­il­ity to con­nect stor­ies. Their non-func­tion­al­ity, how­ever, does not pre­vent us from ima­gin­ing them, build­ing them in our ima­gin­a­tion as objects. Every model works per­fectly and we would enjoy tak­ing a ride on them.

The Fact­ory is Fol­low­ing Me is an enig­mat­ic, pecu­li­ar sculp­ture with an even more pecu­li­ar title, cre­ated by Igor Ruf. Recently, I have atten­ded the present­a­tion of this art­work and fol­lowed people’s reac­tions. Almost no one had the same view on the sculp­ture, or the opin­ion about what it actu­ally rep­res­ents. My friends, curi­ous as they are, asked me to talk to the author and find out why he made it. When I was young, star­ted Igor, my par­ents used to scare me that, if I was not study­ing enough, I would end up work­ing in a fact­ory. Fact­ory, and work­ing in it, sym­bol­ised a pun­ish­ment for everything you should have done in your life but you have not. Or what you have done, but should not have. As a res­ult of these ‘threats’, I tried my best at school, and was dili­gent and polite. I com­pleted sec­ond­ary edu­ca­tion, fol­lowed by the gradu­ation from art academy. Today, I am set to com­plete my doc­tor­al dis­ser­ta­tion and every, yes, every day, I have to give it all in my stu­dio. Des­pite all of my efforts and study­ing, fact­ory and manu­al work fol­low me con­stantly.

Earth, we have a problem…

Plastic raft, cake and hois­ted flag with red cross and Arab­ic let­ter­ing com­prise float­ing object Do Not Lose Hope, loc­ated in town har­bour. Vojin Hras­te uses humour to talk about cur­rent trau­mat­ic moment in his­tory. “Do not lose hope” is a quote 14 15 (and motto on the flag) by Pope Fran­cis dir­ec­ted to Syr­i­an, Middle East­ern and Afric­an refugees. Every day we wit­ness the arrival of ships car­ry­ing des­per­ate people who are on the run from war and fam­ine, search­ing for a new life and hap­pi­ness. Col­our­ful cake rep­res­ents a false image of hos­pit­al­ity, more so if we remem­ber anoth­er quote, by Marie Ant­oinette, dir­ec­ted to the poor people plead­ing for food: “Let them eat cake”.

Inter­cor­rectly is a title of the pro­ject by artists Dražen Budi­mir and Tihomir Matijević, tan­dem known as Kamarad Kunst Work­ers. Poster series, visu­ally based on social real­ist pro­pa­ganda, involves ques­tions of homo­pho­bia, ter­ror­ism and fam­ily val­ues. In con­trast to reg­u­lar posters that try to make us aware of spe­cif­ic social prob­lems, Tihomir’s and Budimir’s ones are utterly notori­ous. Giv­ing cigar­ettes to chil­dren or enjoy­ing beer in front of TV screen dis­play­ing demoli­tion of the New York Twins is socially unac­cept­able. By employ­ing tac­tic of moral inver­sion, they make the themes of their work more vis­ible, at the same time uncov­er­ing the empti­ness of offi­cial state/social atti­tudes.

Ivan Tudek’s Mari­on­ette Speak­er is a subtle art­work deal­ing with manip­u­la­tions by tools access­ible to pos­i­tions of power. The speak­er is an object, albeit a card­board one. Des­pite phys­ic­ally resem­bling the ori­gin­al, it is per­fectly clear that it can­not per­form the inten­ded use. Along­side its inab­il­ity to ful­fil the pur­pose of the ori­gin­al – emit­ting sound – this speak­er is addi­tion­ally tied by strings. The pup­pet is on the strings; ready to be mastered by someone else.

Tele­vi­sion is anoth­er instru­ment of pro­pa­ganda. This elec­tron­ic box con­stantly bom­bards us with inform­a­tion, images and opin­ions. Hrvo­je Cokarić’s visu­al col­lage is dis­played on tele­vi­sion and com­prises vari­ous polit­ic­al speeches, PR inform­a­tion and manip­u­la­tions. Image on the TV is accom­pan­ied by the sound of a heart beat. At the begin­ning, rhythm is slowed down only to a few beats a minute, but gradu­ally accel­er­ates to a state pre­ced­ing myocar­di­al infarc­tion. The artist him­self is also object of audi­ovisu­al abuse trans­mit­ted by cath­ode ray tube. He sees the exit from this pos­i­tion through abrupt inter­rup­tion of cur­rent situ­ation. Viol­ent act of crash­ing, des­troy­ing the TV rep­res­ents the exe­cu­tion of the media. Puri­fic­a­tion of tele­vised con­tent, spins, lies and hypo­crisy lies in zero tol­er­ance. Revolu­tion­ary res­ist­ance is a meth­od of unveil­ing manip­u­la­tions.

Vanja Pagar uses min­im­al paint­erly ges­ture to inter­vene in the pho­to­graphs, apply­ing col­our over the eyes on the por­traits of the organ­isers of this exhib­i­tion. Among them also is the artist’s self-por­trait. Col­lo­qui­al phrase used to express this kind of manip­u­la­tion is: ‘to pull wool over one’s eyes’. Ironyim­bued work makes us won­der if the people on the por­traits are the vic­tims, objects of other people’s decep­tion, or if they them­selves used this exhib­i­tion to some­how trick the audi­ence, to pull wool over their eyes.

If I was someone

Per­form­ance Bravo! is focused on the audi­ence. The author is loc­ated in the sea, more pre­cisely, under its sur­face, while the audi­ence is stand­ing on the shore. Only the artist’s arms are vis­ible; they are posi­tioned above the sea level, applaud­ing. The applause usu­ally comes at the end, as a reward for a suc­cess­ful per­form­ance. In the case of Gildo Bavčević’s Bravo!, the roles are reversed and situ­ations inter­changed. The applause is the only part of the spec­tacle, its begin­ning and its end. How­ever, it remains unclear for whom it is inten­ded. The audi­ence is a pass­ive observ­er, and the author is invis­ible. Even if we wanted to applaud, the per­son to whom the applause is ded­ic­ated would not be able to hear it. If the applause is inten­ded for the spec­tat­ors, it is undeserved. Absurd situ­ation of divided roles – us and them, ours and oth­ers – is addi­tion­ally accen­tu­ated by a clear bound­ary between the land and the sea. It is also the line that phys­ic­ally divides dif­fer­ent pos­i­tions.

It is today’s imper­at­ive to have a good social status and occupy an import­ant pos­i­tion. Unfor­tu­nately, there are a small num­ber of such pos­i­tions and they are mostly taken. In most cases, the struggle to obtain them is mostly futile, fruit­less activ­ity. Like Sis­yphus, who was con­stantly push­ing his rock up the hill, Goran Škofić aims to push the gal­lery wall away. It is the image of a small man try­ing to achieve his dream. A dream gave up by many, without even try­ing.

To engage in a struggle without options of retreat or sur­render is a famil­i­ar motif of Božid­ar Jur­jević’s per­form­ances. Tied to a large rock by elast­ic rope, Božo is aware of his inab­il­ity to move the rock. Des­pite this, he will not give up on his goal. Using extreme phys­ic­al effort, after innu­mer­able failed attempts, he will ulti­mately achieve his goal; push­ing him­self to the edge by using both his arms and legs, with a piece of coal in his mouth, he writes down the word ‘ART’. This term does not only stand for his pro­fes­sion, but also for why he does it. Art is an infin­ite space of free­dom. This argu­ment is power­ful enough for him to give his best to reach it.

1st per­son nar­ra­tion is a fre­quent mode of artic­u­la­tion in visu­al arts. Self-por­trait is one its essen­tial motifs. There are many reas­ons for cre­at­ing an art­work in which the artist is both the main motif and per­former. Some­times it is for the sake of doc­u­ment­a­tion of scenes and changes in one’s per­son­al life, sim­il­ar to auto­bi­o­graphy. Often, it is about pro­fes­sion­al and styl­ist­ic exer­cises in which the model is always avail­able. Occa­sion­ally, self-por­trait is an ode to one­self – a hymn to one’s own exist­ence. Per­form­ance, entitled Ego Trip, was per­formed by Tom­is­lav Bra­jnović in Venice, New York and Arc­tic, just to name a few loc­a­tions. Dressed in black suit, the artist motion­lessly stands in one place, illu­min­ated by small elec­tric lights installed on the suit. Occupy­ing spe­cial pos­i­tion among the crowd is a nar­ciss­ist­ic, prou­n­ounced act; tri­umph all should wit­ness, because there is no great­er reward than being in the centre of atten­tion. Tom­is­lav decided to end his Ego Trip cycle in Omiš.

In the art­work entitled Pen­du­lum, Ivana Jelavić talks about the com­plex role and pos­i­tion of women. The artist is dressed into a wed­ding gown. Two women are get­ting her ready for the wed­ding, giv­ing her a silk veil. As the story unfolds, the start­ing image of a bride is swapped with that of Vir­gin Mary. Finally, her entire body is covered with veil, with the excep­tion of her eyes. This subtle art­work has very little going on in terms of action and story; how­ever, it man­ages to show the changes in per­cep­tion of women and their respect­ive roles. Art­work sym­bol­ism changes in rela­tion to the con­text of dif­fer­ent cul­tures. Ref­er­ences to Chris­ti­an and Islam­ic cus­toms regard­ing women’s cloth­ing (imposed by men!), i.e. their present­a­tion, col­lide with mod­ern way of life, free­dom of choice, eman­cip­a­tion etc. On the other hand, we may ask ourselves if agree­ing to mar­riage means giv­ing these freedoms up, in other words, accept­ing to play a tra­di­tion­al role.

On personal foundations

Petar Bra­jnović is an uncon­ven­tion­al arche­olo­gist. He explores his­tory and many of its lay­ers. His work inter­twines tra­di­tions belong­ing to vari­ous time peri­ods. Occa­sion­ally, the very same nar­rat­ive com­prises ele­ments typ­ic­al of both clas­sic­al age and indus­tri­al revolu­tion, co-exist­ence of Chris­ti­an and pagan ele­ments, as well as those of Com­mun­ist pro­pa­ganda. The amal­gam of mean­ings is not an istru­ment of super­fi­cial visu­al attract­ive­ness. Behind every Petar’s work there is a deep and pre­cise thought. Noth­ing is taken for gran­ted or lib­er­ated from crit­ic­al ana­lys­is. Tra­di­tion and con­tem­por­ar­i­ness exist togeth­er in the same way we do, over all his­tor­ic­al lay­ers.

Besides soci­et­al, there are per­son­al his­tor­ies, private memor­ies and exper­i­ences. Some of them we fondly remem­ber, some are supressed, and most of them have been for­got­ten. Loren Živković Kuljiš remem­bers the begin­nings, the peri­od in which he fell in love with visu­al art. As with so many people, com­ics were his first con­tact with the world of art. Stor­ies told in sequences of images. Draw­ings talk­ing more than words. Today, as an exper­i­enced prot­ag­on­ist of the art scene, Loren has returned to his old love. His draw­ings, Recon­struc­tions, are a trib­ute to his begin­nings. Sec­tions of comic book pages are presen­ted in the man­ner of still life, tra­di­tion­al motif in fine arts.

Dino Bićan­ić’s pho­to­graphs can be regarded as still lifes in some way; toma­toes planted in small tin cans ori­gin­ally used for con­ser­va­tion of veget­ables are a famil­i­ar motif often found in gar­dens and bal­conies. These images pos­sess a dose of humour and accen­tu­ated irony, as well as the sense of awk­ward­ness. Although these scenes may sym­bol­ise per­petu­al circle of life, where the liv­ing is born from the dead, at the same time one can­not escape dis­turb­ing can­ni­bal­ism ana­logy. It is enough just to remem­ber recent events, for instance mad cow dis­ease, caused by food, more pre­cisely, pro­cessed bone meal pro­duced by slaughter­houses. Absurdit­ies may take on the form of mes­sages. They point to irreg­u­lar­it­ies. Even food becomes dis­taste­ful if we over­salt it.

Pre­drag Pavić exhib­its two of his works. Bacon is a tra­di­tion­al, still life motif. Like in Bićanić’s case, this work is also imbued with a dose of humour. The artist decided to add some bacon to spice up his art­work. A pas­sion­ate lover of this meat del­ic­acy, he pays trib­ute to it and elev­ates it to a ped­es­tal. His other work is homage to a tool he often uses. Restored, Pre­vi­ously Depleted Pen­cil is exactly what the art­work title describes. The artist tried to return sharpened pen­cil into its ori­gin­al state by attach­ing its parts using glue. A draw­ing tool became a sculp­ture. Two artist­ic dis­cip­lines are con­joined: paint­ing and sculp­ture sim­ul­tan­eously exist with­in the art­work.

Beyond the boundaries

There is flat, two-dimen­sion­al and spa­tial, three-dimen­sion­al man­ner of rep­res­ent­a­tion, talk­ing in pic­tures. How­ever, there is also men­tal, intel­lec­tu­al way of con­vey­ing visu­al con­tent; con­struc­tions in the con­science of some idea or an impres­sion. Momčilo Golub uses text and objects to give instruc­tions and guidelines for the sake of visu­al­isa­tion. Dis­played ele­ments are tools for estab­lish­ing a vis­ion. Remark­ably vivid and erot­ic visu­al sys­tems may be real or ima­gined stor­ies. The author intel­li­gently leaves us some­where in the middle, with a ques­tion mark over our heads. Could these images be actu­al events from Golub’s life or per­haps his obscene fantas­ies? Is it pos­sible to find ourselves in all of this? If yes, are we going to turn red from embar­rass­ment or remem­ber these feel­ings with nos­tal­gia some­time in the future?

Light, sound and smoke-filled ambi­ent is a place of meet­ing one­self. Solfeg­gio for Color Har­mon­ies by Davor San­vin­centi is an audio-visu­al exper­i­ence. Our senses and phys­ic­al pres­ence are com­pletely immersed in col­our and sound fre­quency trans­form­a­tions, the lat­ter ori­gin­at­ing from Gregori­an chants. Med­it­at­ive atmo­sphere of the exhib­i­tion space is totally con­tras­ted to its sur­round­ings, city centre dur­ing peak tour­ist sea­son. This work of art offers shel­ter, a place to escape the schizo­phren­ic envir­on­ment.

It is sum­mer­time, a peri­od of year reserved for relax­a­tion, amuse­ment and leis­ure. Play, i.e. play­ing, is an integ­ral part of spend­ing one’s free time. Vlasta Žanić enables us to exper­i­ence this activ­ity; we are invited to take part in a vol­ley­ball match that does not require know­ledge of the rules of the game, skill or great phys­ic­al con­di­tion. It is enough to join in. The rules do not actu­ally exist. Num­ber of play­ers is not spe­cified, there can be more than one ball in the field, and the bound­ar­ies of court are not strictly set. Net is replaced by a metal sheet – phys­ic­al bar­ri­er between two teams. Shiny like a mir­ror, it does not allow us to see the oppon­ents, only our own reflec­tion. We do not know where the ball is com­ing from, or how many of them are there. Uncer­tainty is a key ele­ment of the game, and enter­tain­ment is only an illu­sion.

We defined the term spin as a deceit, a fraud. A fab­ric­ated story based on manip­u­la­tion of facts. Spin and How to Avoid It is a text by Ante Kuštre. An exper­i­enced journ­al­ist, famil­i­ar with the tech­niques and ways in which pro­pa­ganda machinery oper­ates, he approached the theme of spin rad­ic­ally; Instead of using some of the tricks known to him, Kuštre gave us sin­cere con­fes­sion. He did not try to make the described situ­ations beau­ti­ful, nor did he try to make him­self look bet­ter than he actu­ally is. He cre­ated a spin by using truth only.

From concealing to revealing (What is the artist’s message?)

As opposed to dis­tor­ted images forced upon us by the struc­tures of power or, even worse, obvi­ous lies served by cor­rupt media; manip­u­la­tions of every kind aim­ing to stu­pefy people and make them spir­itu­ally and emo­tion­ally empty, works at this exhib­i­tion show that spin situ­ations can actu­ally be pro­ced­ure of mak­ing one­self and oth­ers bet­ter. Spin may (also) be a meth­od of reveal­ing the truth. Artists remind us that we need to live with an op

Vedran Perkov, cur­at­or